Friday, September 7th, 2012
Around 8:15 each morning, I’m running between the bathroom and the kitchen, putting on my makeup, cleaning up the breakfast mess, and urging Mason to get a move on.
Mason, come on, it’s time to go play with your friends at school! Let’s put your shoes and socks on. Meanwhile, Mason continues to zoom around the apartment on his Bat Mobile, completely ignoring me (pictured, left).
Five minutes pass.
Boo boo, time to get your shoes and socks on! Let’s go! Now he’s crawling around on the kitchen floor with his buses, making zooming noises. He pauses, looks up and gives me a huge grin. Then he turns his attention right back to his toys.
Five more minutes pass.
Mason (voice pleading) we’re running late, c’mon, let’s go!
He starts inching toward the door where he shoes are, but his eyes are still glued to his toy cars.
Mason! Would you like a time out? Shoes! Now!
He hops over to the door, helps me put his shoes on, then runs down the hall to the elevator. I trudge behind him, schlepping the stroller and my bag, frustrated that we’re behind schedule once again.
Of course lots of moms have the same experience every day. I met up with a group of friends at a local Mexican restaurant last night–a rare mom’s night out–and we talked about our crazy mornings. One of the women mentioned that her son is starting preschool next week and she’s looking for some ways to simplify her morning routine to get everyone out the door on time.
I shared with her that I still hadn’t figured out any solutions, even though Mason’s been in school now for a year. Breakfast can take up to 45 minutes. If it’s the high chair that’s stressing you out, why don’t you just get rid of it in the morning? she said. Give him something he can eat on the go!
She had a good point. If breakfast is our biggest time suck, why aren’t I making changes to remedy the problem? This morning I pulled together something Mason could take on the train with us–cut up fruit and whole-grain cereal–and gave it to him. He looked at it, looked at me and then ran over to his high chair and said Toast! Apple! So I fed him PB&J toast (his favorite) with some fruit and milk. Twenty minutes later than I had hoped, we finally got out the door.
Did I make a mistake by scraping my plans and catering to his demands? Or did I do the right thing? Is it just a matter of changing my mindset and accepting that having a crazed morning is part of being a mom?
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Tuesday, September 4th, 2012
Not a cupcake decorator? My friend Kerry found a fabulous solution that takes the cake (sorry, couldn’t resist) on MeriMeri.com. For less than $13, you can order cupcake kits with wrappers and toppers in more than a dozen cute themes like trucks and magic fairies. Kerry baked vanilla and chocolate cupcakes, frosted them in orange and blue, and then added little truck toppers. The overall effect was polished and adorable, and the older kids got to keep the little trucks (they were affixed to toothpicks, which were too sharp for the little ones).
The bash took place at Kerry’s house last Saturday. She and her family have the kind of private outdoor space that most New Yorkers can only dream about–it’s a huge wraparound patio right off their family room with a toy shed, couches, and tables. It’s the perfect place to hang with friends and celebrate special moments.
The vibe was comfortable and low-key. In one area, the kids played in a sand box. Kerry also had lots of rideable toys out, as well as a mat with every kind of toy car and truck imaginable. And kids could get temporary tattoos (that’s Mason, looking tough, right). The kid-friendly eats were a hit with everyone–various hoagies, pasta salad, tossed salad, and chips with mango-pineapple salsa–and I loved that snacks (pretzels, popcorn, and goldfish crackers) were on low tables so that the kids could just help themselves.
A fun afternoon for sure! And now I know where to look for cupcake decorations for Mason’s bash next year.
What are your favorite websites for birthday party-planning?
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Thursday, August 30th, 2012
Trevor, a 27-year-old transgender father and stay-at-home dad in Canada, was grateful that La Leche League helped him breastfeed after he gave birth to his first child last year. Now he wants to pay that support forward, but the group won’t let him, according to a report on Today Moms.
The breast-feeding advocacy organization told him via a letter that he posted on his blog (milkjunkies.net) that only a mother who has breast-fed a baby is allowed to become to
La Leche League leader, reports Lisa Flam. In other words, thanks, but no thanks, Trevor.
New moms are under tremendous pressure to breastfeed, so how can the largest group devoted to promoting breastfeeding deny an experienced, passionate person the opportunity to help and support moms who are trying to become successful nursers? It just doesn’t make any sense.
In fact, Trevor is probably the group’s best argument that anyone can breastfeed.
Furthermore, Trevor’s a particularly valuable resource for moms who are struggling to nurse, because it couldn’t have been easy for him to do it either. After all, it’s annoying when you’re struggling to learn how to do something and the person who’s teaching you how to do it makes it look (or seem) effortless–or who doesn’t have a story of legitimate struggle.
And surely it hasn’t been easy for Trevor. He was born with female anatomy and although he took appearance-altering testosterone and underwent surgery to remove most of his breast tissue, he kept his female reproductive system.
After reading Trevor’s enthusiastic remarks about breastfeeding I almost wished I could nurse Mason. Then I thought of Mason’s vampire-like incisors and suddenly felt fine sticking to the sippy cup.
Not surprisingly Trevor’s story has created a firestorm and now La Leche League policymakers say they’re reviewing the case and figuring out next steps, Flam notes.
Let me make it simple for you, ladies: Allow Trevor to volunteer for your organization. Value him, and every other person, who is willing to work hard on behalf of your cause.
Photo: Dad and baby via Ana Blazic Pavlovic/Shutterstock.com
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Wednesday, August 29th, 2012
I read a study this morning that has me feeling a little
panicked concerned. In a nutshell, the findings indicate that a temper tantrum from time to time isn’t anything to worry about, but daily tantrums may signal behavioral issues.
My 2-year-old has little fits all the time at home–although never at school (mysteriously? magically?)–so does this mean we’re doomed during his tween and teen years?
Before I go off the deep end, there are a few things that don’t apply to my situation. Parents of 2-year-olds weren’t part of the survey (only parents with children ages 3 to 5 were included). And researchers don’t define what they mean by tantrum, or, if they do, it’s not mentioned in this report.
Is a tantrum a full-blown meltdown where the kid is on the floor screaming? If so, we’re in the clear. Or is it a kid stomping his little feet and whining for a few seconds while he’s waiting for us to refill his sippy cup or hand over the remote? If that’s the case, we’re in trouble.
Photo: Child crying via Irina Rogova/Shutterstock.com
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Friday, August 24th, 2012
The New York Daily News is reporting on a new kind of breastfeeding bully. The latest offender is a chain restaurant manager in Seal Beach, California, and he made a terrible mistake last week.
Kristen Joseph, a 28-year-old single mom and waitress at Hennessey Tavern, was just trying to earn a living—and pump her breastmilk during a 10-minute break from work, as she had done for the last six months—when her as-hole manager stood in her way, according to the report.
Joseph says he refused to give her keys to the office so that she could pump in private. “He said it was disgusting,” she told CBS Los Angeles. “He said he didn’t want me to spray all over his office.”
But apparently he was fine with her waiting on tables while her breasts leaked.
After crying outside, Joseph says she returned to her shift and continued to work as her milk leaked on her shirt, because she had tables to close and paperwork to finish.
How can a manager be so cruel? This poor woman is a single mother, and I imagine she returned to work (despite the humiliation) because she was afraid of being fired.
Companies with more than 50 employees are required to provide an area, separate from the bathroom, for women to pump their breast milk, according to the report. Although I don’t know how many people this particular restaurant employed, how hard is it to give someone a private space for 10 minutes?
I stopped breastfeeding before I returned to work, so I never had to worry about pumping on the job (although my company is very accommodating to nursing mothers). Have you ever had any problems pumping at work?
As an aside, I’ve never been to a Hennessy Tavern, and now I’ll be sure to never go to one.
Photo: Breastfeeding mother via Natalia Dexbakh/Shutterstock.com
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