Archive for the ‘ Newborn Care ’ Category

Why I Liked My Mammogram

Friday, July 12th, 2013

I’ve never been so excited to get a mammogram. Not because it’s at all fun. Not because I want to get it over with due to my-hypochondia-that-makes-my-head-spin-at-night-over-the-alleged-tumors-growing-in-my-body-that-will-leave-my-kids-motherless. No, I was excited because I got to be in the car for 15 minutes. Alone. Then in the waiting room for 15 minutes. Alone. I was actually hoping they were running late. I brought the paper just in case. Then I had another 15 minute drive home. Alone.

It’s the same reason I love getting stuck in traffic in Los Angeles–which is not hard to do. But only if I’m alone.

It’s my time. I can listen to NPR, not Elmo. I can talk on the phone, not scream at my kids to stop screaming.  I don’t have to keep them awake with my own terrible vocal chords by botching Old MacDonald so they won’t fall asleep and screw me on the afternoon nap.

I know every parent can relate to what I’m saying so my words are nothing new. In fact, my friend and fellow blogger Jill Simonian has started to take naps in her car. She took a video of how it’s done. I’ve done it once myself and it felt great.

But back to my boobs. I had to wait 7-months after breastfeeding to get this routine mammogram done. And while I know I’m all over the place here–and I wrote recently about the sad state of my boobs–I actually do have a question. I seem to still have a tingling sensation at times. I wouldn’t call it a sharp pain, or even the “letdown” but it comes and goes, mostly in my left boob. The technician thought that was fairly common. Is it?

Do any of you who have stopped breastfeeding for a while still experience a tingling feeling intermittently throughout the day? Because if not, it is one more thing for me to spin over.

Maybe this is too much information. But in light of the Holly McNish video poem–which I hope you all have watched–I figure I may as well start an adult discussion about boobs that is more meaningful than a tacky billboard full of them (if you’re confused as to what I’m referencing, watch the link above).

Now, if my mammogram comes back with problems, I will eat this post. All of it. Until then, I’m standing by my delightful mammogram excursion.


Pic of mammogram machine via Shutterstock

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Baby Wig. How Dumb Can We Get?

Tuesday, July 9th, 2013

This is possibly worse than the “baby perfume” that Dolce and Gabbana released this last year. Now a handful of companies are starting to make baby wigs… just in case you were so vain that you wanted to cover up your infant’s baldhead.

I’m not talking by the way, of wigs like this one. Playful wigs are one thing. So are wigs if you have a child going through chemo. No, these wigs give your newborn girl a set of bangs, or a full head of hair. I hate to even encourage you to check out their website.

In a day and age where 6 out of 10 girls give up what they love to do because of poor body image, this is a new low. Yes, let’s begin a girl’s life by changing her look. Granted a baby won’t know enough to feel insecure or self-conscious, but it points to a parent with horrible judgment and vanity. I’m pretty sure the type of parent who thinks their baby needs a wig is the same type to raise a kid with criticism, low self-esteem, and a poor body image. Or the opposite: an obnoxious kid who is so full of themselves and their beauty that failure is inevitable. Just what we need more of in either scenario.

I swear I’m going to move my family to a remote spot in New Zealand to become sheep herders–at least until this country gets smarter. Because with the exception of the Supreme Court ruling in favor of gay marriage, this country just keeps getting dumber and dumber…

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Breastfeeding In Public: Embarrassed

Monday, July 8th, 2013

If you haven’t already, I urge everyone to take the 3 minutes and 36 seconds to watch this incredible poet, Hollie McNish, deliver her brilliantly and elegantly worded poem, Embarrassed. Her mantra strikes to the heart of our society–that in a day and age where, “this country of billboards [is] covered in tits,” women are still shamed from breastfeeding in public. She is talking about her homeland in the UK, but her words carry the same weight for mothers in America–and possibly everywhere– as well.

This is one of the most powerful statements I’ve ever seen. I’m not alone. According to the Huffington Post, the video has gone viral. It’s also all over the blogosphere. So if you want to be hip to what’s hot, take the time to watch it. Then pass it on.


Pic of breastfeeding via Shutterstock

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A Must-Have Thermometer

Friday, June 21st, 2013

A few weeks ago Fia was sick. I snuck in her room and felt her forehead. She was burning up. I woke her and attempted the forehead thermometer. But I have found that unless you have a really high end one (like a $300 kind that pediatrician’s use) they are highly inaccurate. It registered a mere 106 degrees. While my heart attack was in progress, I did it again. The second time around it said 103. Whew. Now I only had to have a stroke. Then we did a rectal one and it was 104. I know those are accurate. So I relaxed (kidding).

In my frustration over thermometers I started searching for something better. I came across this new one that I think is revolutionary. It’s called VeraTemp.

Not only is it accurate, but you don’t have to touch anything to get a reading. I can sneak in and just point it at her forehead. Boom. It registers a number. I can see how hot her room is by pointing it into the air. It only takes a few seconds. And it doesn’t make noise if you won’t want it to. I have found the readings to be far better than the ear or forehead ones.

I don’t do formal product reviews but I just thought this device was too good not to share. If you Google it, you’ll come up with a bunch of places that sell it, including 

By the way, what the hell did our parents do? Did we grow up having rectal thermometers put up our butts? Until what age?  I try doing the under tongue thing with Fia and she doesn’t get it. But she freaks out if I try and do a rectal. Good thing she was born in 2009 and not 1969 like her mama…


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Bribing Kids? It’s Called Parenting

Tuesday, May 28th, 2013


Supermodel Heidi Klum is getting flak for paying her kids $1 a day to drink a smoothie. I wonder if all the people who are freaking out have young kids? My guess is that their kids are either grown and they don’t remember what it was like, or they never had any. Because unless you have a kid who is a bump on a log, most people have to bribe in some way or another. Except we don’t call it bribing. We call it realistic parenting. And frankly I’d prefer to pay a dollar, or in my case, tell Fia she can have dessert after her dinner  (since she doesn’t understand the concept of money) than not have her eat properly. I’d also rather bribe her  with a small treat than the Ipad. Seems like too many parents may be using that as a crutch…but that is for another post.

The other day I was at a birthday party for one of Fia’s friends. A pregnant woman was there too. On the table was a huge birthday cake and then a platter of healthy sandwiches. As Fia ooh-ed and aah-ed over the cake, along with the other 3 1/2 year olds, I said half-joking:

“Hmm, I wonder what she will eat first?”

The pregnant woman piped up and said, “Healthy should always come first.”

I nearly shot her.

Come on.  Talk to me when your kid is 3 and in this situation. I would bet my entire life savings that your kid won’t eat the avocado and sprout sandwich first. And I bet that superior attitude of yours will go out the window. Why? Because we were the same way. Until we had kids.

So yes, Fia ate cake for dinner. Followed by a small sandwich. And she survived.

I regularly use bribes. For awhile I gave her a treat after her gymnastics class for participating. A hershey kiss. Not a large milkshake. Or a box of cookies. Just one teeny tiny piece of chocolate. Two classes was all it took to get her out of her shell. And the chocolate I gave her? Gone. Both from her bloodstream and her memory. Now she runs happily onto the mat without prompting.

At a restaurant if she misbehaves, I tell her she won’t get dessert until she sits quietly. I rarely bring out my phone as entertainment. I don’t want to start that habit because for some reason those devices seem to embed in a toddler’s memory and they come to expect it. They also seem like the easiest thing to rely on. But that doesn’t necessarily make it the best (do you guys agree with that by the way?).

Just this weekend we gave her $5. We went as a family to explore downtown LA’s Grand Central Market and Little Tokyo. I told her she could buy whatever she wanted–not that she understands what $5 can get. We talked at length in the car about all the options.

“Mama, what about a giant lollipop?” she said.

“Ooohh, I know! Fia, let’s find you one of those swirly ones. The big round ones that have different colors on them!”

Even though she didn’t know exactly what I was talking about, she nearly ripped herself out of her carseat with excitement.

We even discussed what the man or woman selling it might look like.

“Do you think the lady will have brown hair?” Fia asked.

“Hmm, I don’t know. Maybe blue?” And so on went our speculation.

Sure enough, we found the lollipops. The man selling them? Dark hair. Straight. Not blue.

I had her ask him how much it cost. $1.99. He gave her change. She beamed.

I let her lick it for a solid 10 minutes. We still have the lollipop. We are using it in increments. She ate Udon noodles in Little Tokyo knowing she could have a few more licks after. She ate sauteed spinach at dinner. Same reason. Call it a bribe if you want. But I would much rather have my kid eating well and without a fight for a few licks of this or a few coins of that.

I think that in order to parent properly you need to be practical and prudent. You know when to set the limits and how far to go. Sounds to me like Heidi is doing just fine.


P.S. Here’s a short clip of me talking about it on the show The List.

Picture above is Fia at a salon. She just got her hair cut and I was getting mine cut too. To keep her occupied, I relied on a ring lollipop.

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