Friday, July 29, 2005

"Keeper of the Cheerios"

There's a relatively new song out by Jamie O'Neal about moms, "Somebody's Hero." I don't usually like sappy, country/cross-over type songs, but with a line
like "keeper of the cheerios" I find it genious. If you're ever feeling like you're not doing enough as a mom-especially those of you who work away from home-just remember how excited your child is when you pick him or her up from day care. Like the song sings, you "bring Snow White to life."
Something as simple as reading a book to your child is creating lasting memories, building bonds, and encouraging education. Playing outside with your kid, playing a game, singing, laughing, talking, listening, dinner time, bath time, a stroll around the neighborhood-even if it's one little thing you do each day-if you show your love-it's enough.
"She's somebody's hero
A hero to her baby with a skinned up knee
A little kiss is all she needs
The keeper of the cheerios
The voice that brings Snow White to life
Bedtime stories every night
And that smile lets her know
She's somebody's hero"
Since I'm quoting from a song today, there are two other songs about life with kids-they're pretty funny and very true. I've included them in my LINKS list.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Baby Brain

Have you ever heard the term "baby brain?" Yah, I didn't hear about it until the start of my second trimester while pregnant with my first-born. My sister asked me if I was experiencing baby brain yet? I replied, "What the hell is that???" She informed me that at some point during the pregnancy your brain basically turns to mush. You forget the most simple things including your own name and become a total clutz. I laughed, "that's ridiculous." I just assumed my sister was too busy with her two kids to keep track of everything anymore. I was so wrong. Within a week of my sister's warning, I became Chrissy Snow. I was a total clutz. Apparently, baby brain affects your balance and depth perception. I walked into doorways, tripped over my own feet and backed into several objects with my car.
I forgot the names of my neighbors, and even most of my coworkers. These were people I saw on a daily basis. When people asked me questions like my age, my birthday, my social security number...I didn't have a clue. I just stared blankly into space hoping the answers would magically appear before me.

On three occasions, I wore my fluzzy slippers to work-just forgot they were still on my feet. Several times, I missed the due dates of monthly bills. I once went to the grocery store in my PJ's and tennis shoes-not so bad except that the PJ's were velveteen & blue with day-glow yellow stars all over them. A few times, I'd run the shower and forget I was going to take one. Later I'd return to the bathroom and wonder how long I'd let the water run? On any day, it's difficult to find your car among the sea of automobiles in large parking lots or garages. It's impossible when you're suffering from baby brain-even at the local mini-market. And traces of baby brain must stay in your system well after the birth. I still have relapses...

Monday, July 25, 2005

Things change...

I'm not talking about how convenience stores are no longer a convenience when you have kids or changes to your figure...other things change...
After the birth of my first child, my hair turned from dirty-blonde
to dark, dark brown.
After the birth of my second child, my feet grew from a size 8 to a size 8 1/2-I already had a steady base at only 5 feet-nothin'. At least, I got to buy new shoes! My cousin tells me her nose grew wider. My best friend wrote me that "the hair on (her) head is getting thinner while the hair in other places is getting thicker."
I find it rather odd, but I guess all the hormone fluctuations really change things...though not all the changes are bad. My sense of smell and hearing are much more acute. I once read that a mother's sense of smell improves and that some group did a test. Scientists had several babies wearing same size & color onsies. Later, the onsies were placed in a pile. The mother's were to find their babies' outfit only using their nose. All the mom's were able to distinguish which onsie belonged to their child. Wow, I'll know my kids' clothes, now where's my blonde hair?

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Mommy Time-How about ME time

When he's in town, my husband is pretty good about asking me if I need "Mommy time." Though I prefer the term "Me time," I exclaim "yes" and run out the door. Then, I run back in and grab my purse! Take advantage of ANY free time. And savor it-don't use the time to clean the house or buy groceries. I used to do that, but now I'm sane. ME time must completely for you-worry-free and guilt-free. YOU DESERVE IT!
Go to the park and read that book that's been collecting dust on your night stand for the last year.
Have coffee or better yet,
a bloody mary with a friend at your favorite cafe.
Get a manicure or pedicure or facial-if you've got the day-do it all!
Go see a non-Disney movie. Whatever it is, do something you enjoy. I live far from family, my husband is often out-of-town so getting ME time can be challenging. When the kids go to bed, I indulge by watching a scary movie or calling an old friend for a chat. I sometimes get up early on the weekends so I can enjoy a cup of coffee on the balcony by myself. I have even asked friends to watch the kids for just a few-fifteen-minutes, while I take a shower or a hot bubble bath. What a difference it makes to simply take a shower without my 3-year-old banging on the door, "mommy, what ya doin'?" "You takin' shower, mommy?" "Open the door, mommy, open the door." "Mommy, you wash under you chin, okay."
Where's the Calgon?

Monday, July 18, 2005


Ticket for Nanna to fly from Houston to LA: $300
Gas to pick up Nanna from LAX: $20
Air mattress for you, so Nanna can have the bed: $60
Your kids' faces when they see Nanna: Priceless...

I hate that my kids don't live closer to their grandparents. I feel they are deprived of such a special relationship. I guess the distance does make the too few visits extra special, but it just doesn't seem like enough. Plus, what a help it is to have "baby sitters" available at the drop of a hat. If you live near your parents, I hope you know how lucky you are. If you're like me, and live far from home, make sure to keep in touch with your parents for your children's sake. Let your kids call often, write or email often. Have your kids color a picture for their grandparents. Making hand or foot prints is a good way for the grandparents to see how the kids have grown. Keep pictures of the grandparents around for the kids to see so they always recognize them.
Remember, grandparents are supposed to spoil their grandkids, let 'em.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Stretching the Truth

We all know that Hollywood has a whacked idea of body image and it must explain why the gossip mags think Britney Spears is "ready to pop!" I caught up on the latest entertainment buzz during a doctor's visit this morning. Sources say, that Briteny, who is only 5 months along, looks as if she's already gained all her pregnancy weight... "Could it be twins?" Have you seen the pictures?
I bet she can still see her feet. Reality is, my belly post-birth looks like Britney's does now. Coworkers thought I was going to pop. (At least I could make the dog comfortable)
The skin gets so tight it's actually shiny and itchy from all the stretching. I slathered 100% cocoa butter or olive oil all over my belly. It alleviated the itching and eased my mind about getting stretch marks. (I recommend natural oils or Mother's Special Blend from Whole Foods) Unfortunately, stretch marks are hereditary. No amount of cocoa butter will stop what's already in your genes, but I still recommend it for physical and mental comfort. It's truly fascinating to see your belly grow and know that your precious baby is living in there.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

The Art of Distraction

Parent's must hone their skills of distraction much like a magician. Kids get bored real fast and, yes, kids throw tantrums. Be prepared... have a game, or sing a silly song, point at something interesting or unusual, carry a toy or candy or crayons & paper in your bag or purse. If you're going on a flight or a road trip, take along a new toy. It could be a dollar-store find or a little happy meal toy-it's new and will occupy your child. And, of course, the great distractor-a portable DVD player.
During grocery shopping, I have my daughter be my little helper-many grocery stores now offer tiny grocery carts for kids. Carts shaped like cars are available at some malls and Wal-Marts. My daughter does pretty good on car trips and flights, but hates it if I have to fill up at the gas station. She'll scream, kick the seat and try and wiggle out of her carseat. I can't let her out of the car while I'm fillin' up, so I play peek-a-boo with her through the side and back windows. She's entertained and the tank is full. However, strangers often glare at me with eyebrows raised, questioning my sanity...apparently they don't always see that someone is in the car because of the glare on the windows. I just freak them out more by jumping around the other side of the pump..."There she is."

Tuesday, July 12, 2005


I asked my cousin to make me a t-shirt that read "I GOT MILK" when I was breastfeeding my first-born.
I wear it proudly again for breastfeeding my second child. I get mixed reactions-some chuckles, some sneers, some I-don't-get-it tilted-heads of confusion and some disgust. I work at Playboy, so must of the disgust comes from the male employees. They don't like to think of boobs as baby food. I commend you if you're breastfeeding-especially if you work away from home and have to pump. I have to thank my friend, Anutza, for loaning me her electric breast pump. I have to pump every two hours at work and the electric pump makes it possible. Two at a time!!! Let's forget I look like a cow hooked up to some kinda milking machine--I never knew my boobs could take on the shape of a test tube? The manual pump (even a good one) just takes so much longer and was more painful for me. If you don't have an electric pump, beg, borrow or invest in one (check out used ones for sale on-line).
BTW-You're place of employment HAS to give you a private lactation room with comfortable seating-it's the law. It's funny how serious and accommodating the Playboy security guards act when I need the "L" room opened up in the mornings. For a few minutes, I feel like an Executive.
If you're not breastfeeding for valid reasons, don't feel guilty. My mom tried, but was unable to produce enough milk-I on the other hand could feed quintuplets. Breastfeeding is one of the most special bonds you can ever share and it's a hell of a lot cheaper than baby formula!
If you'd like an I GOT MILK t-shirt email me at or leave a comment here

How come I always have to play the "bad cop"

After a recent phone conversation with my best friend, I realized I'm not the only mother always playing the "bad cop." I thought because my husband was out-of-town all the time, the responsibilities of rule-enforcement and punishment fell on me. Apparently, when you take on the role of mother, you get to wear all of the hats.

I'd been having trouble getting my daughter to sleep in her own bed. My husband adores her attention when he's home between travels and often spoils her. Not wanting to be the bad guy, I compromised with my husband. I put a sleeping bag & pillow in our room for our daughter. If she awoke in the night, she'd come lay on her "palette." She felt secure and we still had the bed to ourselves. But, sometimes compromise backfires and you have to play the bad cop. Now that my husband is gone again, I am left to hear our daughter cry herself to sleep or I'm reduced to petty bribes of grape-flavored chapstick or glitter nail polish if she'll please, please, please sleep in her own bed the whole night.
So far, she's slept in her own bed for over a week.
Maybe when my hubby gets home again, I can try out a different hat...;-)

Saturday, July 09, 2005

Happy Happy Birthdays

Young kids' Birthdays should always be SIMPLE. I attended the 1st Birthday of my friend's daughter over the weekend. A park, a clown-for-an-hour, some finger foods & cake. PERFECT! No need for a list of games or activities or fancy catering. LESS IS MORE. I threw a Butterfly Fiesta for my daughter's 3rd Birthday. I rented a moon bouncer and had a piƱata. The kids had a blast. (I went a little overboard with the fiesta-themed food, but I love to cook) Remember to plan your parties around nap time too. Most parties I've been to start around 11am and end at 2pm or 3pm or whenever-the-kid-starts-acting-up-and-needs-to-get-home-and-take-a-nap-right-this-minute-little-lady. Other parties start after nap time around 3pm. Another great tip is to tape a gift receipt to your gift because you're not the only one that thought the cool, multi-colored flash light was a perfect gift. Also, write your name on the present not just the card attached to the present. My daughter ripped several cards off of her gifts and I actually had to call some parents and ask them what they got her so we could properly thank them-very embarrassing.

Friday, July 08, 2005

Treasure Hunting...

I was enjoying my evening last night with a friend and we were watching National Treasure-only fitting as I would be doing my own treasure hunting later that night! Some how in the midst of the obnoxious stereo-surround-Dolby-digital sound track, I heard a deafening "PING." My mischievous 3-year-old put my wedding ring down the bathroom sink-the symbolism alone just made me ill.
I ran into the bathroom and found my daughter, naked, standing in the sink smearing hand soap all over the mirror. "What are you doing?" "Where is mommy's wedding ring?" "Daddy gave that to me and it means a lot to mommy." My daughter just pointed and said, "Down there." Then, she smiled at me as if everything was cool. I was red hot. I told her she was not allowed to play with mommy's things and to go to her room. How could so much happen in such little only takes a second or getting caught up watching a Hollywood blockbuster. I always put my rings out of reach, but my clever daughter crawled from her lil' potty to the bath tub edge to the sink and from there was able to reach the jewelery box. It's now hidden and I'm sure she'll find it... some day...
(BTW-I managed to get my ring, but now I need a new drain pipe)

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Silly puddy...

My best friend recently sent me a card. The front cover read: "Our friendship has firmly stood the test of time." The inside read: "Which is more than we can say for our boobs."
It's not enough that we must endure child birth, our bodies have to suffer aesthetically too? With my first child, I was envied by many for bouncing back to my original figure so fast. Yah, I was skinny again. But, once I was done breast feeding, my boobs sagged and lost their firmness. They felt more like handfuls of silly puddy! It affected my body image. I was completely caught off guard with the second birth. I just assumed that the end results would be the same. After I gave birth to my 8lb 10oz son, I still looked 5 months pregnant. I'm not exaggerating. I had to wear maternity clothes for another couple of months after the birth! People would ask me how far along I was...I already had a big boy, thank you, I'd reply to them nicely. Kill 'em with kindness, right. My point is, yes children are the reward for pregnancy and birth, but shouldn't we get rewarded in other ways as well? Why should we be punished with mushy boobs or stretch marks or hemorrhoids or sagging tummy skin or "baby weight?" And I don't buy into the ideas of "badges of courage" or "war wounds." Give me a break or firm tits, please...

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Spit Up Happens... Sometimes

I wore my hair up today not because it's easier, but because my son spit up all in it. I didn't have time to redo my hair, so I rinsed it as best I could and put it up with a big clip. Let's hope I don't smell like curdled milk all day. With my daughter, I often wore spit up on my shirt and as she grew up, the spit up turned into cheetoz hand prints. Having witnessed my "crumby" clothes, my friend, Mary, bought me a plastic apron. She thought I could wear it while I got the kids ready in the morning so my work clothes didn't get ruined before I had to leave. It really is a great idea-a "MOM BIB." Oh, and another good tip. If you have long hair, pull it up while you're getting ready too and especially when you're burping your baby.

If Forrest Gump had been a mom...
Bumper Sticker Guy: Hey lady! Hey listen, I was wondering if you might help me. 'Cause I'm in the bumper sticker business and I've been trying to think of a good slogan, and since you've been such a big inspiration to the people around here I thought you might be able to help me jump into - WOAH! Lady, your baby just spit up all over you!
Mommy Gump: It happens.
Bumper Sticker guy: What, spit?
Mommy Gump: Sometimes.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Checked out at the check out...

As I was waiting in line at a local grocery store checkout, my 3-year-old daughter full-on grabbed my breasts, prompting several guys behind us to chuckle aloud. I understand she was venting her frustration and jealously-I only wish it hadn't been so public. My daughter is quite jealous of my son when he's breastfeeding and often refers to my breasts as "Aedan's boobies." I knew having a sibling was going to be a tough transition for my daughter and expected some regression. But, I was thinking regressing back to diapers or a pacifier. I never took into account breastfeeding. Then, at one point, my daughter actually wanted to nurse again. I had to explain to her that she is a big girl and doesn't need mommy's milk anymore-the milk is for Aedan now. Trying to appease her, I added that Aedan can't have chocolate milk like she can-he's just a baby. Also, I try to give her equal snuggle time after I feed my son so she doesn't feel left out.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Time to Clean out the Freezer

It's Friday, and I was late to work again-but only by 10 minutes. That's pretty good considering how difficult it is getting 3 people ready. My friend, Bridgette, suggested that I take a makeup kit to work and put on my makeup there. It really does save a lot of the morning rountine time.
On a funny note, I told my hubby to use the milk in the plastic (breast milk) bags in the door of the freezer if he needed to feed our son while I was out running errands. Well, my husband grabbed the plastic bag in the door of the freezer that was full of leftover coconut milk. Sweeter than my milk, our son slurped it down. Guess it's time to clean out the freezer again.