Blog Posts by Mommyfriend

  • Parenting Guru: That Mom, everyone knows at least one


    I know "That Mom", like I actually know her.

    I first met her back when she was just a newlywed, seemingly the kind of girl without That Mom tendencies. Today, and one child later, she's evolved into That Mom. You know, the mom who knows better than everyone. Nevermind the fact that every child is different, nevermind the fact that I've been a mother longer, nevermind, nevermind, nevermind; she simply knows better.

    It came as no surprise when she told me her 3 year old son eats only organic. It came as no surprise when she told me she's raising him sugar-free. It came as no surprise when she gave him an unusual name and spelled it with lots of silent letters. Her son is smart and sweet but I fear for his normalcy in the wake of That Mom.

    That Mom doesn't know much about my children, probably because she never asks. Maybe it's better that way since she's already told me my choices to circumcise and immunize were "unfortunate".

    It's hard to like That Mom.

    Now That Mom is pregnant

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  • Parenting Guru: When the first missing tooth goes down the drain


    My son was late to get his teeth and even later to start losing them. At the ripe age of 6 ¾ he finally had his first loose tooth. We were so excited, even our family abroad knew about it. As we remained on "Tooth Watch", weeks upon weeks went by with no progress. We all began wondering if that tooth would ever come out. Since my son wouldn't dare let anyone get near it, we were just going to have to wait. And wait. And wait some more.

    My wiggly-toothed boy carried a little baggy in his lunchbox every day in the hopes he'd bring it home with a toothless smile. Every day that baggie came home…empty. We had big plans for his first missing tooth that included a special Tooth Fairy pillow ready to nestle that little tooth and the accompanying exchange of said tooth for cold hard cash. Like the baggie, the pillow remained empty.

    The morning of my son's spring school program arrived and we were running late getting him in costume for his performance. In the interest of a

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  • Parenting Guru: Your boobies, your baby, your choice

    When it comes to breastfeeding, we all start out with the same thought:

    I'm a woman. I have boobies. How hard could it be?

    Enter the irony of breastfeeding. It seems like breastfeeding should be all so very natural and instinctual and yet it just isn't. Breastfeeding takes practice and support and lots and lots of lanolin cream. My breastfeeding struggles caused many a 3 a.m. nervous breakdown. They caused many a painful nipple blister. They caused many a feeling of failure. With BooBoo, I pressed on, and on, and on like I had something to prove even when nothing but guilt kept me going. In the end, I was ever so glad I did press on (and on and on) but I'm far from a lactivist.

    To the mother who is riddled with crippling guilt and suffering super dramatic breastfeeding breakdowns, just know, it's OK not to breastfeed. I wasn't breastfed and look how well I turned out. Ooo, maybe not a good example. Boy Wonder wasn't breastfed for medical reasons and look how well he

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  • Parenting Guru: A love letter to my childhood crush, gone much too soon

    Dear Surfer Boy,

    I met you in the 2nd grade; your surfer boy good looks blew my 7 year old mind. Your mom was a single parent and worked as a waitress. I could tell the two of you had a special bond. You liked surfing and skating, making you automatically cooler than the rest of us obsessed with Smurfs. You didn't talk much and had very few friends. You were different.

    I knew you and your mom struggled. You didn't have nice clothes or cool stuff the like rest of us. You had a really mean dad who used to do bad things. I never really understood what that meant but it was obvious you had seen a lot in your short life.

    We were in the same class for 4 years. You never knew I like-liked you, at least I didn't think you did. Somewhere around 5th grade I used to daydream about being your girlfriend and marrying you someday. We would have blonde children and tell everyone we met in 2nd grade. It was going to be a love story for the ages.

    When I changed schools in 7th grade,

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  • Parenting Guru: 5 dreams for my son

    When I look at my 8 year old son I'm filled with so much hope for his bright, bright future. I've got some big dreams for this amazing kid and hope he shares in these dreams as he grows:

    1. May my son continue his love of art for a lifetime. He has been taking art lessons ever since he first exhibited artistic skill with a crayon. He's been blessed with amazing talent and hope he continues to develop his craft for as long as it gives him joy. The ability to give beauty back to the world is a tremendous gift.

    2. May my son grow to be a dreamer. In the last year my husband and I have focused on defining our personal dreams to make them a reality, even if only in a small way. It is my hope that my son recognizes the power of his dreams and the overwhelming joy that comes from reaching for the stars.

    3. May my son marry well. So maybe it's a bit premature to begin thinking about marriage but I don't have to tell you how quickly time passes. I dream my son chooses a wonderful

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  • User post: Letter to the second child


    You had used baby gear, used clothes and used toys.

    We took half as many pictures of you.

    We never finished your baby book.

    We didn't freak out when you bumped your head, didn't eat your dinner or weren't potty trained by your 3rd birthday.

    We didn't track every milestone against child development books, buy every novelty to stimulate your imagination or have your pediatrician on speed dial.

    But for all the things we didn't do, we offered so much more.

    We had realistic expectations of you and ourselves.

    We snuggled you in relaxed and experienced arms.

    We enjoyed you with a calmness we had yet to learn with our first.

    You may be second in line but never second in our hearts.

    Want more Mommyfriend *blush*, click here!

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  • Parenting Guru: We're not spending Christmas in the car!

    [Editor's note: This month, Shine Parenting Gurus are sharing their tips on how they get through the holiday season without losing their wits and patience. Have a tip to add? Join in!]

    The holidays are a time of celebration and togetherness. The idea sounds simple, right? Not in my experience.

    My husband and I are both children of divorce and while it meant we scored twice the gifts at Christmas as children, as adults it meant trekking all over the planet to visit parent, after parent, after parent, after parent. And that was just our parents! If you've ever spent the better part of Christmas Day stuck in gridlock, you know exactly what I'm talking about.

    I vividly remember Christmas with our newborn who was famous for projectile vomiting (yeah, really). We traveled from house, to house (to house, to house) to spread our usual holiday cheer. Two projectile vomiting incidents, 3 changes of clothes and 4 houses later we finally made our way home, completely defeated

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  • User post: Just An Ordinary Day


    It was a typical morning in the Mommyfriend household.

    The alarm sounds at 4:45 a.m., I stumble out of bed to check the computer. Awesome, 7 spam blog comments and a solicitation for male enhancement. Because I need that.

    I make my way to the shower. I don't shave. I get out and find Little BooBoo standing in the dark doorway all silent and Children of the Corn-like. It freaks me out. I tuck him into my bed next to a snoring Big Daddy P.

    I attempt to blow dry my hair as quietly as possible on low. It's takes forever. BooBoo keeps shouting, "Too loud Mommy!", sigh.

    I'm tired. I look hungover. Great, hungover without any of the fun that generally comes from a night before looking hungover.

    My head hurts, it's 5:15 a.m. and it's too damn early to be doing this. Big Daddy P goes to get BooBoo ready for preschool. BooBoo fights with him about wanting to wear pajamas to school. I can hear it through the baby monitor along with ridiculous reverb. They argue over who gets to squeeze the

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  • User post: I Don't Like My Son's Teacher


    I DON'T LIKE MY SON'S TEACHER
    .

    Hot damn that felt good to say. I like everybody and I still don't like her.

    I don't want to bore you with the completely rational reasons I feel this way. You know I'm reasonable (just smile and nod), you know I hate confrontation, you know I'd rather spend the entire school year without ever setting foot in the school office and yet here I am. So just back me, tell me I'm right and be on my side. We're close like that, you and me.

    Disliking Mrs. Teacher has been a challenging family secret to keep. Big Daddy P and I don't want our son knowing just how much we dislike her or disagree with her discipline methodology. The last thing we would ever want to do is undermine her authority, at least in his eyes.

    Let it be known that I am not, nor will I ever be, the kind of mother who thinks her child can do no wrong. I know better than anybody the kind of undesirable behavior my child is capable of exhibiting. Don't we all know this about our kids? But

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  • Parenting Guru: The panic attack that changed everything


    This year has been filled with so many amazing moments all brought about by a panic attack.

    A few years ago we were living large. We sold our modest townhome and purchased a larger home because we needed it; after all, we had another baby on the way. Besides, we both worked demanding jobs and we deserved it. Or so we thought.

    In the era of free spending and easy living we were living the life we thought we deserved. We never bought a boat or went on an exotic vacation, but we dined and shopped and played with the best of them. We had earned it. Or so we thought.

    About 30 seconds after we purchased our home the housing market crashed. We were instantly underwater. Everybody said it would happen. I didn't listen. I blame pregnancy brain. And the spending continued.

    When we were first married we were young and broke. We shared one car for years. We took pride in saving money. We didn't know any Joneses. We were rich in love and nothing else seemed to matter. We

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