Blog Posts by Jenny Isenman from TheSuburbanJungle

  • 18 Insane Things Parents Say to Their Kids --That All Parents Will Understand

    Why?Why?As parents, we've all had to turn some pretty ridiculous phrases at one time or another. The question is, have we, the parents, gone bat shit crazy for uttering these words, or is it our children who are certifiable for doing things that require us to speak them?

    Just last week, I had to ask my 9yo daughter, Ry to stop smelling the cat. And not so long before that, I had to explain motorboating to my tween son (with an audio demonstration), so he could keep up with the middle school cafeteria banter.

    Here are some of the weirdest things I've had to say to my children over the years (I surprise myself daily), plus some phrases from my awesome Facebook Fans, who never disappoint.

    1. "You can have a favorite shirt, but you're not allowed to have a favorite pair of underwear."

    2. "Gum you find under tables is NOT 'free' gum."

    3. "I don't care how much she annoys you, your sister is not for sale."

    4. "Please stop riding the dog."


    5. "You cannot charge your friends at school for massages. And please stop massaging people at school."

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  • 31 Signs Your Baby Boy is Officially a Tween

    When did it happen???When did it happen???It feels like my little boy become a tween over night. One night he was asking me to tuck him in and the next night he was asking me to knock before entering. Tweenhood is an interesting time - a time of acclimating to the social mores of tween/teen culture, learning which hair products work best, which headphones are the most comfortable, and feeling like a total loser (whether you've got tons of friends or none at all).

    It also reiterates the fact that they're no longer our little babes, which is a topic I've been banned from writing about it. Seriously, after exploring how moms of boys feel they'll one day leave them for another woman and contemplating what to do when your tween actually pays attention to you, I've literally been given a writing restraining order - imposed by mothers who can't stop sobbing ... and giggling … and giggling while sobbing, which is never a pretty sight. Rather than waxing poetic about how our little ones are becoming tweens, I will simply list the

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  • Soap Opera Smooches with a 5 Year Old and Other Awkward V-Day Moments with the Kids

    V-Day AwkwardnessV-Day AwkwardnessThis is still one of my favorite V-Day moments (awkwardness, inappropriateness, and fear for my reputation aside).

    On February 14th a few years back, Ry, my daughter, then 5 years old, trotted into my room to wish me a happy Valentine's Day, to hand me a stunning hand-made card, and to neck.

    Sure, they tell you not to make-out with your kids, but sometimes there's a fine line between so cute and so scary.

    What parent doesn't secretly love it when their child says they want to marry them (assuming they're too young for marriage at the time)? I mean, for how many more years are they going to want to hug, snuggle, or hold hands?


    "This card is sooo beautiful. Come give Mommy a kiss," I said in a very innocent non-romantic way.

    Ry, maybe wanting to show me the magnitude of the holiday, grabbed my face with both hands and planted the biggest soap opera smooch on me. I started to giggle

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  • 24 Unexpected Questions Every Mom Asks Herself at Some Point

    What have you asked?What have you asked?Lately, I've found myself gauging my sanity by asking a lot of "Is it just me?" questions and by making lists of mom similarities (like, our universal Momisms) -- all in an attempt to make sure I'm not crazy and I'm not alone. Last week, I asked my Facebook Fans if it's wrong for the "Tooth Fairy" to steal money from one kid to pay the other?

    (PS The answer was a resounding "No," which I think means I can use that money to pay for food delivery as well, right?)

    The truth is, there's a slew of questions every mom will ask herself at least once, or daily. Here are just a few...

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  • 30 Signs You Are NOT a Parent (As Listed by a Mom)

    We Moms Can Spot You a Mile AwayWe Moms Can Spot You a Mile Away

    After getting such an amazing response on my "40 Signs You're a Mom" list, it dawned on me that those folks who don't have kids yet or don't want them have some pretty distinctive qualities of their own. Qualities that give us seasoned parents a chuckle at the mere thought of, like, not finding it a triumph to have an uninterrupted visit to the bathroom. Bwahahaha. Hahahah. Haha. Ha.

    That said, here are 30 signs you are NOT a parent.

    1. People still call you by your actual name.

    2. You don't have to look at anyone else's poop.

    3. You don't sneak vegetables into your recipes like meatloaf, smoothies, brownies -- you just eat them.

    4. You don't go to bed wondering how many times you'll be woken up before morning.

    5. Your house is clean.

    6. You don't sound like your mother.

    7. You probably don't know every sound that every animal makes and there's no urgency to learn. (PS: a donkey goes bray, did you know that?)


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  • 18 Creative Lies Moms Tell Their Kids to Stay Sane

    Us Moms Can't Be Trusted, Huh?I'm just gonna come right out and say it. Moms lie! We do --and frankly a fast thinking fib can be the difference between a good night's sleep and being sent to padded room. You see, mothers are a brilliantly dishonest bunch. And deception is one of the strongest tools in our arsenal (well, until your children figure out how to look things up on Google, that is).

    Of course we fabricate things in different ways. There are the universal terms and phrases, which I laid out in my list, "Momisms - What We Really Mean" -- and there are the incredibly creative lies that we tell to prevent a meltdown, an argument or simply to give us a moment of peace and a brief reprieve.

    Here are some lies I've told my kids to save sanity, furniture, face, time, and money... (PS there are a few sprinkled in from my amazing Facebook Fans, who are creative and unscrupulous -- I love that about them.)

    1. They don't give you ketchup at drive-thrus.

    2. The lunch lady calls me when you don't eat your

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  • 12 Awesomely Ridiculous Resolutions I Can Actually Keep


    I'm so tired of looking back at the resolutions of the past year and realizing they lasted no longer than a week, which is why this year, my resolutions for 2014 are way less ambitious.

    1. Eat More Carbs

    Screw gluten free, I'm going to add carbs and gluten to my diet with reckless abandon. Yep, I'll start each meal with a generous helping of bread and rolls onto which I will spread an obnoxious amount of butter. I'll stuff food into my mouth with such fervor it'll make other diners uncomfortable to watch. I also vow to eat everything à la mode, including ice cream.

    2. Forget an Old Language

    This year, not only am I not going to learn a new language, I'm going to let my brain atrophy to forget the one I already know. I'll watch endless episodes of Adventure Time and Regular Show. I'll quit doing crosswords and speaking in complete sentences. I'll break all grammatical rules: I will misplace modifiers, dangle participles and end sentences in prepositions. I will

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  • For the Upcoming Break - a Nervous Flyers List of the Most Annoying Things About Air Travel

    The Suburban Jungle.comThe Suburban

    With winter break around the corner, I thought I would share some of my flight issues, because if you're a nervous flyer, you'll totally get them and maybe they'll ease the nerves (or make them worse, I really can't say) but a little insanity solidarity can't hurt.

    On my most recent trip, I was alone (which I rarely am) the airline had "open seating." Which basically means you get an assigned boarding number (like at a deli counter) and you must fend for yourself and your family/companions from there.

    As I walked the aisle, I quickly assessed my potential row-mates. Had they recently showered? Would they take initiative in an emergency? Are they so young that they're in diapers? Are they so old that I may need to resuscitate them during the flight? These are important observations, and because there's not enough time for a formal interview, they need to be assessed on the fly (pun intended).


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  • I Miss the Smell of Snow - a Floridian Gets Nostalgic - Wanna Trade?


    I'm aware that living in South Florida, has its perks. Our kids can play outdoors all year round. Our spring/summer wardrobe can be extensive and therefore chicer than most people's spring/summer wardrobes, and one could do an outdoor hot yoga class 2/3rds of the year ….

    Plus, I love being able to mention the weather to my Northern friends for the sole purpose of making them jealous. However, there's one time of year when I'm truly bitter that I live in a season-less paradise of outdoor fun, and that's wintertime. I haven't seen snow on Christmas for well, about a decade.

    Growing up in the North, there was nothing like the joy of waking up to a layer of snow. I recall running to the frosted windows in the back of my house to see one of my favorite sites, a fresh white blanket perfectly tucking in the houses and the fences and the play-sets in my neighborhood. It would always shimmer in the morning like it was enhanced or photoshopped. Next, I would run to the windows that

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  • The 10 Most Annoying Moms - How Many of Them Have You Encountered?

    JenEcards Jenny From the Blog

    At a party last weekend, I got stuck with "That Mom." You know, the mom you dread seeing at birthday parties, Starbucks, school functions, PTA meetings ... the park? There are lots of "those moms", which is why I've written this handy list of the most annoying moms I've come across -- and how to deal with them. Armed with this knowledge, you'll be able to circumvent their traps or at least make yourself disappear faster than David Copperfield at a One Direction concert (I don't have insider info on whether David Copperfield dislikes One Direction in concert … I just imagine he wouldn't want to be there).

    1. PMS Pam: Talking with this "depress-fest" is more sobering than watching an aged Gary Busey perform live. Her weighty chit chat will include talk of diseases that could strike at any time, children who were poisoned by school lunches, and Botox gone horribly, irreversibly wrong. After a few short minutes, you'll be sucked into an abyss of worry and despair that will have

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