Living life in the carpool lane..

Posts Tagged ‘parenting

One day it rained.  I had a physical therapy appointment for my voice (I have nodes, click here) and decided to leave the girls with my mom.  Thank God she was in town!  It’s hard enough dragging along two kids to places they don’t want to be, add rain, and it’s practically a nightmare!


After the appointment, I ran some errands.  There were several things I needed to buy from several places.

I finished my errands right around lunch time, and I received a call from my mom.

“Buy lunch.”

The McDonald’s was the closest and quickest food I could think of to buy, so into the drive-thru I went.  I ordered food, and I went home.

In a rush to get inside to feed the girls, I shoved the milks (they came with the Happy Meals) into my purse.  I brought the food and other items inside and began eating.

That night while in bed, I remembered that the milks were still in my purse.  True to form, I was too lazy to go downstairs to remove the, but vowed to remember to move them in the morning.

A few days later, while clearing the area around the purses, Hubby finds a sweater that smelled like rotten milk.  Unable to figure out the source, I washed it, and went about my day.

The smell of rotten milk lingered in that area, and we couldn’t quite figure out why.

A few days after the sweater incident, Hubby was going through the purses when I hear him gasp in disgust.

My black Coach purse was the source of the offensive odor.


They exploded in my purse and spilled rotten milk inside.  It was disgusting.

Luckily, my wallet and other everyday things were inside the diaper bag.  Only a few items were left in that purse and they went straight into the trash!

I had no idea what to do with my purse.  I didn’t want to throw it out without trying to save it.

So I popped it into the washing machine.

Thank God, it came out perfect!  The smell was gone, the purse was still in great condition, it was like nothing happened!

Lesson learned.  No matter what time of the day or night, if you remember that milk is stored somewhere it should be, then remove it right away!


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Ok, I know what you’re thinking… I started up the blog again, promising consistent content, and then I take another few days off…

I have an excuse.

We’ve been in the process of moving back into our home.  My laptop and my computer were still in boxes.  The house was (and still) is just a mess, and I had no time or energy to write a blog.

It’s been quite an adventure, so far, this year.

El Nino was threatened to be the worst that we’d seen in awhile, and while that seemed to be an empty threat, our house did suffer some damage.

When the first rains came along in late January, we noticed some water damage on the ceiling.  As the storm continued, it began to rain inside our home.  Emergency roofers were called to patch up the roof and then the process of getting the roof and interior fixed began.

Because we rent, we didn’t have to personally deal with the insurance adjusters or contractors.  We were just told when people were coming to check the house, when we had to leave, and when we had to come back.

It was a long process that found us out of our home for almost two months.


From the first of February until Good Friday in March, we were staying at Hubby’s parent’s house.  We brought with us the bare necessities but as weeks went by, we started bringing in more and more items from our house into the inlaws house.  By the time we were ready to leave, we had so much stuff, it was like we were actually moving back into our home again.

Though very overwhelming, I feel like I’ve been given a second chance at a ‘move in.’

The first time we moved in, I was pregnant with K, on and off bedrest, and was told not to do much of anything during the move.  While we were able to get settled in, it all just felt very jumbled and overwhelming.

Now, I’m able to move in the way I wish we did back in August of 2014.  However, with the kids, it’s taking a little longer than I would like.

How do you handle moving with two small children?  I’d love to hear some tips and tricks you used to keep the kids occupied (and safe!) while you tried to move into your living space!



Read about my ABC blog series here.

Look back – A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L , M, N, O, P, Q, R, S, T

Being a parent and watching your child grow up is truly unbelievable..

During the day, sometimes I just sit and watch M while holding on to K.

M used to be as small and helpless as K, now, she’s this spunky, talkative, affectionate, opinionated young girl…

All of this occurred in the span of three and a half years… unbelievable.

Then I look at K, only eight weeks ago, she was this super tiny preemie.  She slept all day, cried all the time… completely helpless.  Now, she stays awake longer, and likes to look at her baby toys.  She kicks her legs like she is trying out for a soccer team.  She waves her hands towards objects and sometimes can touch them.  She can look at me and coo.  She smiles.  She holds her head up.


I know that I’m still just beginning.  I know there are so many more milestones I have to witness.  There are so many events that I will be a part of.  They still have to grow up and be adults.


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Read about my ABC blog series here.

Look back – A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L , M, N

When Hubby is home, it seems like I have everything under control.  Sure, K is crying.  Sure, M wants to go the potty.  But I have everything under control.  It’s like I have a system.

When Hubby is at work, it’s like the girls know I’m outnumbered.

Suddenly, K has a poopy diaper and the same time that M suddenly needs to go potty for the same reasons.

Suddenly, K is feeding and M wants a glass of water, or some yogurt, or something that she needs me to get up for.

Suddenly, I get some down time to cuddle with M, and K suddenly cries with the need to be picked up.

Outnumbered.  It’s like they know…

It’s like they have a plan to just spread me as thin as I have ever been spread before..

Honestly, I can handle running four or five different lab tests at work at the same time better than figuring out how to parent these two girls…

As difficult as I make it seem, I will never, ever, ever trade it for the world.  I’m exhausted.  I’m worn out.  My mind sometimes doesn’t work properly… But I’m loving every second of it.

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It’s been a full work week (Mon-Fri) where its just been me and the two littles, M and K.

It’s not been easy.  In fact, I’m typing this up one-handed as both girls are napping, but K decided my arms were much more comfortable than any flat, soft surface I tried to lie her down on.  No worries.  Past experience has taught me that these babies only stay this little for so long and that I should make the most of every opportunity I have to hug, snuggle and cuddle with them.

So, please excuse any overlooked typos..

It’s definitely been chaotic.  I’m still trying to figure out the best way to make life run as smoothly as possible.  Hubby and I are still trying to figure out how best to juggle both girls when it comes to meal times and bedtimes.  It’s trial and error, but as long as both kids get fed and both kids sleep, I think we’ve been pretty successful.

The house is a mess most of the day.  Laundry piles up.  Diapers are everywhere.  Clothes are everywhere and we never know if they are clean or dirty.  Dishes pile in the sink.

Definitely chaos until Hubby comes home from work.

But, I’m embracing the chaos.  It’s only been three weeks since K’s been born.  It’s only been three weeks since I could actually move around.  It’s only been one week that I’ve been doing this on my own.

It’s a learning curve, and I’m definitely trying to figure things out one task at a time.

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Since we’ve returned from our vacation, we noticed that our diaper bag has gotten a lot lighter. 

Gone are the multiple changes of clothes.  Gone are the big stacks of diapers.  Gone are all the other little parenting odds and ends that parents with infants bring with them.

So, Hubby and I decided to get rid of the diaper bag and just go with a big bag.

I have a big bag.  Years ago, during my young and single days, I purchased a pink Burberry purse for about $700.  (Ahhh.. the good old days..)

That bag is the perfect size to hold 4 diapers, a pack of wipes, an extra pair of leggings, and my wetbag.  My phone and wallet fit perfectly into it as well.

So, the purse that I had deemed my most prized possession for a good part of my early-mid twenties has now been “mommified.”  It’s turned into my diaper bag.  A definite sign of how much my life has changed.

We aren’t retiring our diaper bag for good.  We plan on still using it for the long, all day excursions. 

I’m actually really glad we’ve decided to downsize.  It’s almost liberating!


So, we had an “interesting” experience the other day..

The local library has craft time for toddlers every Wednesday.  I figured this would be a fun little activity for M to do. 

It would be her first time doing a somewhat structured activity outside the home.  She would sit down, glue some stuff on to a piece of paper.. the end.

If only it were that simple!

We got to the library, and immediately, M’s eyes lit up.  As we got to the children’s section, there were pictures of animals and things she knew.  Right away, she says in her “loud by default” voice, “Pig!  There! Oink, oink!”

“Shhhhh…”  says Hubby and I.

We put her down onto the large circle carpet where all the children’s board books were.  My intention was to show her some library books so we could check them out and finish our Summer Reading Program. 

She decided that the big circle carpet was a perfect open space to run around and twirl on.  Did I mention she was singing and vocalizing at the same time?

“Shhhhh…” again from the hubs and I.

It came time to sit down at the tables and start gluing.  It was paper shaped like a basket, and some paper fruit. 

M recognized each fruit and started naming them.  If we weren’t in a library, it would have been really cute because she would get so excited about each fruit.  “Strawberry!  Gapes!  Oh-nges!”

“Shhhhh…”  Luckily, it was just Hubby and I trying to keep her quiet!

She wanted to eat the fruit.  She LOVES pretending, especially pretend eating. 

I showed her that she was supposed to glue the fruit down onto the basket.  I put glue onto the back of the fruit and tried to get her to hold it.  She proceeded to get glue on her fingers, which she didn’t like.

Hubby helped her glue down a few pieces of fruit, but she got tired of that.. FAST.

So, she got down from her chair and decided to explore.

And by “explore” I mean, running up and down the aisles of the children’s section, while being her normally loud self..

Hubby gave chase and you knew the moment he caught her because all you could hear was, “No.  Down, out!  Doooooown.”

Hubby stepped outside to the near by atrium, and all I saw was her running around and just enjoying herself.

There was no way I was going to be able to get her back onto the chair to finish this project.  So, being the only crafty one in this little family, I finished the project for her!

Hubby brought her back into the library, but she did not want to stay quiet.  I told Hubby to finally just take her outside. 

I was so embarrassed, but I kept my head high.  I gathered my things.  Checked out the books I wanted, and left. 

It was totally embarrassing while I was in the moment.  But now that I’ve had hours and hours to think about it, the less and less embarrasing it is.  Why should I be embarrassed?  I’m a parent!  This is what I deal with!  You can’t tell me I’m the only one that’s had to go through this. 

There wasn’t anything I could do.  She definitely was NOT ready for this.  I thought she would be.  She loves coloring.  She can sit still when being read to.  She’s normally a well-behaved child.  She’s been praised several times for her behavior in a restaurant.  She doesn’t mind being in a stroller or shopping cart.  She’s never acted out inappropriately.

This just wasn’t her thing.

It was new to her.  It was a new environment, and she wanted to explore.  She just doesn’t know that she had to be quiet in a library, and with all the stuff to see, the last thing she wanted was to sit down and glue paper together.  There was nothing defiant about her behavior.  She was just curious and excited. 

I understand.

And in her defense, she WAS probably the youngest one there. 

The mothers there were very understanding.  The library staff didn’t say a word.  I’m sure this wasn’t the first time they had an active toddler there during craft time. 

After the library fiasco, we decided to take her to the nearby park to just run around and blow off some steam.  This park has a huge duck pond and we ended up circling the pond three times!  She’s definitely a ball of energy!

I will definitely wait a while before trying this again.  Maybe a song and dance class would be more her style…


So, I’m still convincing Hubby to guest blog for me.  I  keep telling him that he can pretty much write about whatever he wants… sorta.

I still think it’s a good idea.  I still think it will provide readers with additional insight on our lives.. and our lives as parents..

I really think it’s a good thing..

But, in the meantime, I think I’ve found a guest blogger!

Trust me, this all sounded good in my head.  I’m hoping this executes just as cute as I’m thinking it will be..

The guest blogger is.. M!

Without further ado, here’s my 22-month old daughter, M.  Interview-style.  And believe me when I say that I made sure SHE did all her own typing.

Me:  So M, how’s life so far?
M: ////////////hhhhhh b sx (Translation: Good.)

Me:  What do you like to do for fun?
M: zfzffw4455 (Translation: I love teapots.  I like watching all the DVD’s my parents have given me.  I can’t forget, I LOVE playing with my iPad.  I especially love surfing through Youtube videos.)

Me:  Why can’t you sit still?
M: v       rr (Translation: Mom, I’m a year old.  What do you want from me?!)

Me:  Ok, one more question since you obviously don’t want to be sitting with me right now.  How do you rate me and Daddy’s parenting skills?!
M: prffffffffffff (Translation:  Considering the fact that I’m still alive, and I’m super happy most of the time, I’d say that you are both doing a great job.  I love you, kiss!)

Ok, so I may have embellished a little bit.  But don’t you think that’s what your kid would say if you asked them those questions?!



To store M’s toys, we have an Ikea Trofast.


It comes with these bins:


Playtime in our apartment has come to this:


Sometimes, she dumps the toys and swims in it, or even makes “toy angels!”  You know, snow angels, but with toys.. toy angels.

Well, after one night of her constantly dumping out the bins after I pick them up after her, and her constantly tripping over her toys, I figured enough was enough.

No more dumping!

So I left it there.  The entire mess.  I left it there until the next day when she came home from Grandma’s house and we were all home from work. 

She wanted to watch some of her TV shows.  I said no.  I said we had to pick up all the toys and put them away before she could watch any TV or play with her iPad.

That didn’t settle well with her and she started to whine, but I stood my ground. 

I tried to make it a game.  I tried to make it like basketball and everytime I would put a toy in the bin, I’d say “score!”  It worked for a little bit, but she got bored with that quickly and tried to move on.

I continued to stand my ground. 

Ok, so she’s a year old.. if she didn’t want to physically pick up the toys and put them away, that’s fine.  But she had to learn that she couldn’t do anything else until all the toys were put way.  So when she would try to walk away, I would pick her back up and bring her back to me.

“See?  Clean up, clean up!”  I’d say in a sing-song manner. 

“Out! Out!” she’d whine.

But she wasn’t going anywhere.   She stayed with me until all the toys were put away. 

Then, after she calmed down from all the whining, I let her watch one of her TV shows.

As she was watching, she went over to one of her bins and dumped it all over the floor again.

So, I turned off the the TV.  She was NOT happy.  But I said that the TV was going to be off until we picked up all the toys again and no more dumping.

Toys were picked up, TV was put back on.

This cycle continued for about three more times for a day or so, sometimes with the iPad, sometimes with the TV.  Either way, when she would dump the toys, and whatever other thing she was working with was turned off.  She was to stay with me until the toys were picked up and we would say “no more dumping.”

During this, we were also trying to show her that she could pull out one or two toys of choice out of the bins instead of dumping.  We were giving her new options.

A day or so of whining, and then it was over.. sorta.

She’d get near the bin with every intention of looking to dump those toys.  All we had to say, in a slightly “more stern” tone was, “M, no dumping.”  And she’d back away, or pull the bin out and pick out a toy!


Well, like with all toddlers, nothing is predictable..

There are times when a stern, “no dumping” works.. and there are times where she just feels the need to just release some chaos. 

You know what, that’s ok.  If she needs to blow off that steam, that’s fine.  But she also needs to know that after she dumps the toys, they need to be picked up, and that she can’t do anything else until those toys are put away.

What sort of adventures are you having while parenting your toddler?

I read things about other parenting styles.

Rigid schedules.  Early bedtimes.  Strict diets.  All organic foods.  Homemade baby food.  No TV.  Limited TV.  3 Day Potty training. 

Do I stick M to a rigid schedule?  No.

Does she go to bed by 7pm?  No.

Do I make sure everything that touches M’s mouth is organic?  No.

Do I turn my nose to fried and/or processed foods for M? No.

Does M sleep in her own room? No.

Do I follow the parenting methods of some book or studied the works of parenting experts?  No.

Does that make me a bad parent?  Absolutely not.

Does it sometimes cause me to doubt my parenting skills?  Well.. sometimes…

Yes.. I do question my parenting skills.. and I do question my parenting choices.. but doesn’t everyone? 

Every family is different.  Every child is different.  Every parents “parents” differently. 

However, you can’t avoid comparing yourself to others.  It’s inevitable.   Even if you try to avoid it, sometimes you get unsolicited advice or even criticism of the choices you make for your child.  That causes you to question your skills.

I think a little self-doubt is healthy.  It keeps you aware of the different methods of dealing with parenting situations.  A little self-doubt allows you to think twice about a parenting decision and maybe even helps you try something different if your own methods aren’t quite working to your standards.

I’m learning that mommy doubt is natural, but I shouldn’t let get out of hand.  I’m ok with what I’m doing as a mother.  I’m ok with the decisions I’m making.  I’m ok with the little person M is becoming because of my parenting decisions.

I think the goal for every good parent is simple… to raise a good child to turn him or her into a good adult.  That’s the bottom line. 



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July 2020