A Serious Case Of Mommy Brain

Mommybrain.jpg

I want to thank my friend Deb over at All About Parents for giving me the opportunity to guest post about ‘My Serious Case Of Mommy Brain’ on her fabulous blog. This post was originally posted on her site.

A very interesting thing happened when I was pregnant with my daughter. My mind turned to mush. I became very forgetful. I could barely hold on to a full thought. I would begin a sentence & then forget what I was talking about halfway through. I couldn’t remember the simplest of things.
“Honey, can you pass me that long silver thing with the buttons that changes the TV channels?”
“You mean the remote control?”
“Yes! Thank you! That is what that thing is called.”
My friends warned me about pregnancy brain & that it would get worse as my pregnancy progressed. The thing that they all failed to mention was that after my daughter was born that pregnancy brain would turn into mommy brain.
To read the rest of the post click through below…

Read the Full Post 

Posted in Life | Tagged , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Can You Scold An Other Mother’s Child?

IMG_1485

Being a first time mom at 38, I was the last in my line of my friends to have a child. I had a difficult time relating with all of these friends when I was childless. There were many things I just did not understand.

One day while shopping at the mall with two of my friends and their children, one of the kids fell behind in the group. At the time she was only a toddler. I watched as she walked over to the escalator. As she slowly stepped on, I screamed her name & told her to be careful. Her mother quickly scooped her up & we continued on our way. A little later, my other friend pulled me aside and reprimanded me. “You don’t do that.” she told me. “I didn’t want her to get hurt.” I replied. “You don’t ever yell at another person’s kid.” she told me. I learned that many mothers felt this way and took this to be some sort of unwritten mom code. I learned to hold my tongue when it came to other people’s children.

Fast forward a few years, I am at a birthday party & playing with my neighbors two sons. The mother stood at the entrance & watched as I entertained her sons with my goofy antics. One second the boys were jumping & laughing and then without warning they started to wrestle each other. I stopped, frozen with the curse of the mom code. My neighbor hollered at me, “Stop them! Break it up!” I quickly pulled them off of each other in a daze of confusion. What is the correct thing to do when dealing with other people’s children? As someone that did not have any kids of her own, I truly did not know.

After the birth of my daughter, my eyes were opened to all of the struggles and joys all of my friends had already experienced. It brought a new clarity and understanding. As my daughter reached a certain age, we began to be more social. I took her to the park, kid’s gyms, the library and anywhere where she could be around other children. Often the mothers would socialize and talk among themselves while their children played unsupervised. I found myself facing that same old dilemma. If I saw a child that was about to do something that could put themselves or others in harm’s way, I am I supposed to sit back and mind my own business or do I risk the mother’s wrath and speak up?

I will take the wrath. I cannot keep quiet if I see a child dangerously close to the end of a jungle gym. I won’t bite my tongue if I see one kid hurling toys at another one’s head. I won’t because what if the day I stay quiet, someone gets hurt and what if one day it is my daughter throwing toys or standing to close to the edge, I would hope someone e would speak up for me.

Recently while at an amusement park, I saw a young child struggling to get off her ride. She looked as if she might fall, so I gave her my hand to climb down. The mother very defensively grabbed her hand and pulled her away. What a strange reaction I thought.

As mothers, we all have the same goal, we all face the same challenges and we all need help once in a while.  Nobody wants their child to get hurt and I am sure nobody wants their children to hurt anyone else, whether it is physically or emotionally, so why is it so taboo to address another mother’s child. If it done in a respectful manner, shouldn’t we all welcome the extra set of eyes when our backs are turned.

Posted in Life | Tagged , , , , , , | 14 Comments

You Can’t Keep Them In Diapers Forever

IMG_4609

I have been in no big rush to potty train our daughter. I actually have been pretty much dragging my feet when it comes to getting her out of diapers. There are many reasons that I have not pressed the issue, for one I did not want to put too much pressure on her or us. I know that she will learn in her own time & she is getting there slowly, but surely. Changing diapers may not be my favorite part of motherhood, but I am not so eager to give it up.

The speed in which our daughter is growing up is anxiety inducing. Every time I turn around she is learning something new, outgrowing her clothes and becoming less reliant on us. Before I have barely adjusted to one stage in her life, she is on to the next. She is beginning to exercise her independence.  The sound of the phrase, “I do it myself” echoes through our house several times a day.

Mommy can no longer put her in her car seat. She doesn’t need me to pour her a cup of juice anymore. The list of things that she needs me for are diminishing.

Recently she has been very particular about what she wears. Getting her dressed in the morning is a battle of wills. I have started to let her pick out her own outfits. Whatever she chooses is fine with me as long as it is weather appropriate.

Over the weekend we had one of our usual power struggles. Clad in nothing but a diaper I chased my daughter through the house trying to get her dressed for the day. The outfit I picked out was all wrong, so of course she wanted to pick it out herself. She burrowed through her dresser and pulled out an adorable long sleeve shirt with an owl on it & a glittery black tutu. As I reached to take the shirt from her to get her dressed, I heard that oh so familiar phrase. “Mai can do it. I do it myself.” I released the shirt and took a step back. I would let her try it & was ready to step in whenever she needed help, but she never needed any help. I stood there and watched as my little girl wrestled & struggled with pulling the shirt over her head and searched with her arms for the sleeves. She was persistent and determined. To my surprise she managed to get her shirt on. Without hesitating she reached for her skirt and pulled it on with more ease. She beamed with pride after she was done. I was beaming as well. I quickly picked up my daughter & brought her outside to tell her daddy what she had just accomplished. I couldn’t have been more proud. Along with that pride brought the realization that she really was not a baby anymore.

The infant stage went by in a blink & now I am watching as my daughter no longer resembles a toddler as much as she does a little girl. When did this happen? I should be happy. Her newly found independence takes a lot of pressure off me & my husband. I should be proud & I am, but I can’t help feeling a little weepy as I look behind me and see the days, months & years pass by. It is strange to think that by tomorrow even today will be a memory. Life with a toddler moves at warp speed & sometimes it is hard to keep up. I am trying my best though. I am not quite ready to move onto that next stage yet, but I already know that I cannot keep her in diapers forever.

 

IMG_4617

Posted in Life | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Gingerbread Haunted House

IMG_4734

My child has very little concept of time. It is hilarious because she knows the names of the days of the week and she will use them with no real understanding of when that day actually is. She will reminisce about a something that happened weeks ago & retell it saying that it just happened yesterday. It is no surprise then that she does not have much of a grasp on the seasons or when the holidays fall. Most of the summer Mai had been asking me to make a gingerbread house. Trying to explain to my daughter that we were in the wrong season for gingerbread is pointless. Last week she was especially insistent, so what is a mommy to do?  I promised her that we would make gingerbread houses. To keep with the theme of the season, we made haunted houses. I found this great recipe for pumpkin gingerbread online.

http://www.instructables.com/id/Pumpkin-Spice-Bread-Halloween-House/?ALLSTEPS

We doubled the recipe for our house.

I measured out the ingredients & handed them to Mai. She sang Patty Cake as she mixed & rolled out her dough. My girl loves to cook.

IMG_4681 IMG_4683 IMG_4688

We drew out templates earlier in the day, stocked up on candy & made our icing.

Royal Icing

2 eggs whites

1 box of confectioners sugar

Beat eggs until frothy & mix in the sugar until smooth. Add the icing to your piping bag.

As we were working with raw egg, I also used store bought icing for Mai to use when she decorated.

IMG_4693 IMG_4696

IMG_4685

With the leftover gingerbread I rolled out a haunted tree.

IMG_4687

After you have baked your gingerbread, be sure to trim and straighten edges. Cut out any windows or doors.

 IMG_4700 IMG_4690

Generously apply icing & assemble your house. Use items around your house to hold your pieces upright and pushed together.

 IMG_4698 IMG_4699

IMG_4701 IMG_4702

Once your house is assembled, you can start decorating. We used After 5 thin mints for our roof eaves

IMG_4704 IMG_4707 IMG_4708

Mai helped out by decorating the tree with some M & Ms.

IMG_4709 IMG_4713

We added orange gum drop slices, gummy worms, candy corns, licorice whips, Hershey kisses, pumpkin Peeps, M&Ms & mini Kit Kats to our house.

IMG_4711 IMG_4716

While mommy was in charge of decorating the front, Mai got to do the sides. She hid M&M’s & gummy worms in the house through the windows. We gave her a bowl of icing to dip her candy in to make it easier. She dipped the candy in the icing & then decorated her face more than the house.

IMG_4724 IMG_4727 IMG_4738 IMG_4739

It was a lot of work, but it was a fun project for me & the munchkin. I can’t wait for Christmas now to do it again.

IMG_4734

Posted in Arts and Crafts, Holidays | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Paper Plate Halloween Crafts

Untitled

It is hard to believe that it is already the middle of September. My favorite season is here. I can hardly wait to begin all of our fall festivities. Soon we will go on our annual leaf peeping drive through Vermont & take our daughter apple picking. We have been trying to brain storm for Halloween costumes, but have not had much luck coming up with anything. I asked Mai, what she thought we should all be for Halloween. She said that she wanted to be a Jack-o-lantern & that I could be the mommy Jack-O-Lantern & daddy could be a ghost. Adorable! Although I do not think that I will be going as a mommy Jack-O-Lantern this year, it is never too early for our Jack-O-Lantern & Halloween inspired crafts.

Paper Plate Jack-O-Lantern

IMG_4624

Draw the Jack-O-Lantern face on the back side of the paper plate.

Cut out the the outline to make the Jack-O-Lantern face.

Cut out the outline to make the Jack-O-Lantern face.

IMG_4626

IMG_4627

Paint your Jack-O-Lantern orange.

IMG_4630

 

Paint another paper plate on the top side. Layer colors light to dark.

Paint another paper plate on the top side. Layer colors light to dark.

Cut out a stem using green foam or construction paper. Glue it to the plate.

Cut out a stem using green foam or construction paper. Glue it to the plate.

Glue the two plates together.

Glue the two plates together.

Mai wanted hers to be a mask, so we attached a pipe cleaner to the back for her.

Mai wanted hers to be a mask, so we attached a pipe cleaner to the back for her.

IMG_4661

PaperPlateJackOLantern.jpg

Scarecrow Mask

Draw your scarecrow face on the backside of the paper plate. Cut out the eyes. Paint your plate yellow.

Draw your scarecrow face on the backside of the paper plate. Cut out the eyes. Paint your plate yellow.

Using black foam or construction paper, cut out & glue your nose & eyes in place.

Cut out & glue your nose & eyes in place using black foam or construction paper.

With a marker draw in eye lashes & stitches around the mouth.

With a marker draw in eye lashes & stitches around the mouth.

IMG_4650

Bend & glue a few pipe cleaners or yarn in place to make the hair.

Bend & glue a few pipe cleaners or yarn in place to make the hair.

Cut out a hat & glue it \to the top of the scarecrow.

Cut out a hat & glue it \to the top of the scarecrow.

Cut out a scarf & check it using a marker.

Cut out a scarf & check it using a marker.

Glue pipe cleaners or string to the back to hold the mask in place on the head.

Glue pipe cleaners or string to the back to hold the mask in place on the head.

PaperPlateScarecrowMask.jpg

Paper Plate Spider Web

Cut slits around the paper plate every 2 pleats around.

Cut slits around the paper plate every 2 pleats around.

Using black yarn, slide a strand between one of the slits. Cross the strand across the plate repeatedly until you achieve your desired look.

Using black yarn, slide a strand between one of the slits. Cross the strand across the plate repeatedly until you achieve your desired look.

End your web at the same spot that you started it in. Tie the starting strand & end strand together,

End your web at the same spot that you started it in. Tie the starting strand & end strand together,

Cut 3 pieces of pipe cleaner. Glue the pieces to the pom pom to form a spider. Add goggly eyes if you desire.

Cut 3 pieces of pipe cleaner. Glue the pieces to the pom pom to form a spider. Add goggly eyes if you desire.

Stick the spider in the web. Use a hole punch to make a hole on the edge of the plate & use a piece of string or a pipe cleaner to hang your web.

Stick the spider in the web. Use a hole punch to make a hole on the edge of the plate & use a piece of string or a pipe cleaner to hang your web.

Posted in Arts and Crafts | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments