Sunday, March 31, 2013

11 Things (Because 10 is So Cliche) I Learned on Family Vacation

We went on a four day family vacation last week. I use the term "vacation" because we weren't at home, but it was in no way leisurely. Fun? Yes. Relaxing? Not even a little bit.

We went to Disneyland. Because it costs a small fortune to spend a day in the parks, I transform into what my family refers to as "Disney Drill Sergeant" from the minute we get out of the car. We are going to to see EVERYTHING, dammit

Day 1: Arrive at parks at 9 a.m. Leave parks at 9 p.m.

Day 2: Arrive at parks at 9 a.m. Leave parks at 10 p.m.

Day 3: Arrive at parks at 9 a.m. Leave parks at 6 p.m. Drink beers. (Not the kids, of course.)

That's 34 out of 72 hours of TOTAL FAMILY TOGETHERNESS. Despite the horrendous crowds and the fact that we walked ourselves ragged, I can honestly was awesome. Here are some things I learned.

1. After 3 solid days of walking and standing in lines with virtually no complaining, the argument of "My legs are too tired to walk anymore," after one hour at at the mall is NO LONGER VALID.

2. Despite efforts to bring our own snacks, Disney's marketing plan of placing food carts every 50 feet totally works. Because it's hard to pack cotton candy, turkey legs, and Mickey Mouse shaped ice cream sandwiches in a backpack. Well played, Disney.

3. After spending $65 at a "table service" dining location, $30 for 4 hot dogs seems like a bargain.

4. Not all teenagers are obnoxious. But in regards to the ones that are, it's really a miracle that you don't see more headlines announcing "Teen slapped by complete stranger" in the news.

5. Divorce lawyers could make a killing standing outside the exit of 'Tower of Terror' for occasions where the husband convinced the wife to go on the ride because, "It's really not bad and it only drops like one time." Not that I'd know from experience...just a guess.

6. I am not a very good role model to our children for facing your fears when it comes to heights and small enclosed dark spaces. I also have a quite piercing scream. See number 5.

7. "Unplugging" (at least 90% of the time) for 3 days will not kill you.

8. As long as your kids aren't too old to want to have their picture taken with a Disney character, you're not too busy to wait in line to do it.

9. There are very few places in the world where wearing mouse ears makes you cooler.

10. Watching your husband be a kid with his kids will make you fall in love with him all over again. (And possibly forget - I said possibly - about number 5.)

11. You're never too old for Disneyland. 

Drill Sergeant says "CLICK ON THIS BANNER!"

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

The Post in Which I Get Controversial

I don't write about controversial topics. Mostly because I have a tendency to be a fence-sitter but (if I'm being completely honest) it is also because I don't have zillions of followers and I don't feel like I can afford to lose any that I might offend. Followers are hard to come by in the blogging world, and it's no fun to lose even one. So I usually just keep the strong opinions I do myself.

But not today. There is a hot topic of debate going on right now, about which I'm struggling to keep my mouth shut. (If you're reading this I obviously couldn't help myself and ultimately hit "publish". Yowza. I'm getting ballsy in my old age.) It's true, I'm a little afraid I'll lose followers over it, but at the same time I feel like if you don't want to be my friend because we disagree on an issue, it's probably best that we go ahead and part ways. I feel like writing this is the right thing to do. Partly because it's my right to express my opinion, and also because this particular topic affects people that I care about. In doing so I am showing my support for them.

I think I should start by clarifying that I am a Christian. I go to church. I have a Bible on my nightstand. My family says grace before meals. I pray when I am thankful, or hurting, or confused. I do the same for others. I assume there is a God and a Heaven, but I've never come face to face with either so it is my faith that leads me to believe in both.

What I do not believe is that it is either my job or my place to decide whether or not men can marry men or women can marry women. Neither do I believe that I have the right to cast judgment on them. Those were not things I was ever taught to do.

That's right. I support marriage equality.

I don't know what it's like to be gay because I'm not gay. But I DO know what it's like to fall in love and want to spend the rest of your life with someone. To raise a family together. To declare your love for one another in front of the people you most care about and have it recognized as legitimate. I can't imagine how frustrating and hurtful it must feel to have that privelege denied.

I have several gay and lesbian friends. They are good people. People who contribute to society and care about others and abide by the law. I know of a lot of heterosexuals who don't do any of those things.

When we lived in Texas, we lived down the street from both a gay couple and a lesbian couple.

The gay couple started our neighborhood watch program. They held picnics in their backyard. They would always set aside a special bag of treats just for Tink on Halloween. When they had yard sales, they would let her pick anything she wanted. They walked their dog in front of our house every evening, and when Tink would run outside to pet her, they waited patiently until she was done. Don't they sound threatening? I don't know how long they were together before we moved in, but we lived in that house for almost 3 years, and we've been gone now for 6. They are still together, so their relationship has withstood at least 9 years. A lot longer than many heterosexual marriages last these days.

The lesbian couple lived two doors down from us. They loved animals and rescued any strays that came their way. They brought us a baby gift when Dimples was born. They are long time residents of my home town and my Mom can't remember a time they weren't together. They are probably in their 60's now. Wouldn't they be a total disgrace to the sanctity of marriage? They've literally shared a life together, but since they can't get married, neither of them will be considered next of kin when something happens to the other. Pretty heartbreaking if you ask me.   

I've seen a lot of people throw out biblical references regarding this subject. Yeah, it's talked about in the Bible. That much is true. But if we are really going to bring the Bible into it, let's be fair. The issue is addressed in a handful ( is mentioned less than 10 times) of scriptures. There are, however, a whole slew of passages on "loving thy neighbor as yourself" and not passing judgment on others. It seems that those two things are being overlooked on this issue, does it not?

I'm not writing this because I think I'm going to change anyone's opinion on the matter. Chances are I'm not. But, I suppose a part of me does (naively) hope that people will open their minds to the fact that we are all different. We are all human beings. And we are all imperfect. We should probably keep that in mind when we start down that slippery slope of picking and choosing things out of the Bible for which we are going to deny people rights.

"Live and let live." It's a much easier life motto to abide by.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

A Bunch of Stuff That Has Nothing To Do With Anything

I'm going to write this real fast-like because I've got a ton of shit to do but I've been feeling extremely negligent in that I haven't written anything in an entire week and I know you all are wringing your little hands with worry and are just minutes away from sending out a search crew.

No need for all that because I'm right here safe and sound in The Middle of Nowhere, California.

I've been super busy this week because my Mother-In-Law was in town and I had to be sure to create the illusion that I do more than sit around and play on Facebook and read blogs all day. So I did laundry and cleaned some things. Also we went out to lunch several times and drank wine and then followed it up with shopping. Charming says he will be limiting our time together from here on out as he believes her to be a bad influence and doesn't want me turning into a day drinker that sends us into bankruptcy. MIL, if you're reading this he didn't say that. (He totally said that.)

We are also heading to Disneyland this weekend and I can hardly wait. Lots of parents avoid it like the plague, but I love me some Disney. So does Charming. We are only taking the kids because its generally frowned upon to wander out of town and leave young children at home unattended.

I'm trying to decide if I want to get on the Ferris wheel again. It would be really good blog material because last time I freaked the freak out and almost shat myself because I am terrified of heights and neglected to consider that Ferris wheels go really high and also we got on the one that swings on a pendulum and I was just sure I was minutes from meeting my maker. Charming did ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to calm me down because he couldn't stop laughing long enough to even TRY to convince me that I was not about to plummet to my death. Asshat.

So as to enjoy my family vacation and remain present, I will probably not be posting for a few days (except on Facebook because AS IF).

One last thing. I actually DID publish one thing this week, but it was at a friend's corner of the internet. Her name is Kyla and her blog is Mommy's Weird. She hails from Canada and says things like "go on holiday"  and other fancy sounding stuff. We've developed an online friendship that most people just dream about. You know, where we post random shit on each others Facebook pages and send emails riddled with profanity. She STILL owes me one of those BFF necklaces that she promised me months ago and I'm starting to think she's a bit of a liar.

If you haven't checked it out yet, PLEASE DO! I give Victoria's Secret the what-for they have so long deserved. I still can't believe she let me pollute her page and I am eternally grateful.

Until next time (as long as I don't fall out of the Ferris wheel)!

Friday, March 15, 2013

A Little Privacy Please?!

Have I mentioned lately how much I love to read? No? I LOVE to read. Like ALL CAPS love it. I read a little bit of everything. I read stuff about real people (I think all the smarty pants call it non-fiction), I read love stories, I read stuff about vampires, I read stuff about wizards, I read stuff that's supposed to make me a better person, I read celebrity magazines that in no way shape or form offer to make me a better person, and my most recent obsession...I read blogs. Lots and lots of blogs.

I have some favorites. Blogs I read every day. Some of them obviously found out I was stalking them a big fan because one day Jen from People I Want to Punch in the Throat gathered those heeeeelarious ladies together and said, "You know that Girl Next Door? The one that drinks and swears? She seems nice and I heard she likes to read, so I think we should put together a book for her." And they did. They're offering it for sale to the general public, but I know the real reason behind their collaboration. Don't ask them about it because it's supposed to be a secret. And their story might vary ever-so-slightly from mine. But you know how writers are. Always making stuff up and denying the truth. So let's just stick with my version, mmkay?

Anyway. What a gesture, amirite? So, I of course read the book and I gotta tell's good stuff. Like real good. Like actual LOL good. And I have a strict policy against using that acronym. Because most of the time it's a big fat lie. I hardly ever really LOL. A more accurate acronym would be SRBSMTS. Smiled Real Big So My Teeth Showed. But that's just stupid. However, this time I did LOL. More than once. It's gotta tell you something that I've used that acronym three times in one single paragraph. Shit.

Wanna know what it's called? Wait. I'll be right back. I Just Want to Pee Alone.

Juuuuust kidding. That's the name of the book - "I Just Want to Pee Alone". Genius right? If you're a mother you can already relate.

This cover. Is awesome.

But, listen up. I don't think this book is exclusively for mothers. I think everyone should read it (save the under 18 crowd and anyone with an aversion to profanity - and if that's the case, what are you doing here?). These gals have foul mouths. Those heathens.

I think women who think they might be mothers one day should read it so they know what's coming. I think men married to mothers should read it so you can learn that your wife isn't the only one who left behind a little of her sanity (and grooming habits) after becoming the mother of your children.  And I, of course, think mothers should read it so they know they are not alone on this crazy ride. And that you aren't the only person in the world who has accidentally eaten baby poop.

Oh, and mothers of teenagers? Buy this book right now and lock your daughter up in her room 'til she's read it cover to cover. Cuz this shit is better birth control than a chastity belt. I ain't lyin'. 

I loved this book because it tells the real side of motherhood. They tell it like it is and they laugh while doing it. Which is awesome. Because, really, if you can't laugh at the ridiculousness that this job presents every. single. day, you've got a loooooong road ahead of you.

These ladies can paint a picture I tell ya'. Remember your first (surprisingly intrusive) ultrasound when your baby was no bigger than a pea? That. The first peek at your post-baby body and all of its parts? That. Reintroducing sex into your marriage after baby? That. Conception, pregnancy, delivery, toddlerhood, teenage years, and then some. I'm telling you. It's all there.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

An Open Letter to Mark Zuckerberg


I'd first like to congratulate you on the GAZILLIONS of dollars you've made off of being a genius. You've obviously got big ol' brains and I'd like to thank you for using them to invent a social media outlet that allows us to spend countless hours of our days connecting with people all over the world. It's amazing. Really.

But I've got a little bone to pick, Mark. Can I call you Mark? I just assumed we were on a first-name basis since you call me by name and ask "How's it going?" or "What's on your mind?" every time I turn around. You've also started asking me to pay you to show people my posts. I'm not sure what your general policy is regarding asking for money from friends, but I'd personally only hit up someone I felt really close to for something like that. I'm flattered you feel that way about me.

Now I get why you'd want to ask this of actual businesses that turn a profit and want to use your site as a means of cheap advertising. But, I'm going to let you in on a little secret. I'm not making a dime off of my page. Not one. You may find it surprising that this blogging business isn't terribly lucrative. I know. It was a shock to me, as well. I don't expect you to plug my page in the newsfeed of every person on Facebook every time I post (I'd hate to be responsible for breaking the internet). I'm not everyone's cup of tea and I understand that. After all, as you can tell by my name, sometimes I drink a little too much and my language can get dicey. There are some sensitive folks out there and I don't want to be forced on anyone that can't handle a gal that has a tendency to be a bit saucy from time to time. I can only assume that's what you do when people pay to promote their page through you since I've got "suggested posts" of all sorts popping up at me all the live long day. Ads for shit I don't care about.

Ads for things like Mr. Clean.

And Crest Toothpaste.

And an insulting number of ads to "Lose 4 Dress Sizes the Rachel Ray Way Did". (That one was in the sidebar so I didn't know how to get a picture. Maybe if I were a genius like yourself I could figure it out.)

Do you think I live under a rock? I know all about Mr. Clean because I've turned on my television since...1960. They sell Crest at every retail establishment in America. I even get a tube for free every 6 months when I visit the dentist. Maybe I don't want to lose weight. Have you ever thought of that? What the hell, Mark? Are you "suggesting" that my house is dirty, I have bad personal hygiene, and that I'm fat? Eff you.

I'm sorry for saying "eff you" just then. That wasn't nice. But, I've gotten myself a little worked up, Mark. Worked up because I just want to be allowed to share the literary masterpieces I write on my blog with the very nice people who have already taken the time to "like" my page and not throw tomatoes at me. Not EVERYONE on the Facebook. But you want me to pay you to do that. Not cool, Mark. Not cool at all.

Maybe I'm making the wrong assumption here - and if I am I wholeheartedly apologize - but I think I speak for all of us bloggers out there when I say we think you're being a stingy asshole. Could you get this shit fixed asap? We're having to do sneaky, pain-in-the-ass things like post our links in the comments so you don't catch on to our shameless, self-promoting that earns us nothing more than a teeny tiny ego boost with each "like" or comment.

We don't want your gazillions, Mark. We just want to be seen/heard/read. Is that too much to ask? Come on, Mark. Do us this solid.


 Will you PLEASE click on this banner? It won't cost you a cent.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Are You Friggin' Kidding Me: A Sleepover Tale and Why I Spent Sunday in a Coma.

Birthday parties are a real pain in the ass. In the early years, I made a practice of inviting every child my kid had ever interacted with to his/her party. That got old in a hurry. Now I allow them to invite a few friends to go do an activity somewhere. Mostly because it's less fuss and more entertaining to go to a location outside of my house and also because it is OUTSIDE OF MY HOUSE.

Last year I got out of the birthday party ordeal altogether because we were brand new to town and the kids hadn't had time to make many friends. We instead went on a weekend trip to Disneyland (we're a half day's drive away) as a joint celebration (both of their birthdays are in March). It was glorious.

I was hoping to get away with the same arrangement this year, but I was met with serious opposition from my newly-turned-12-year-old. I tried to reach back into the ol' memory bank and recall how important birthday celebrations with friends are at that age...and I caved.

Charming and I had already decided that "we are going back to Disneyland, dammit", and it may or may not be more for us than them but that is neither here nor there. So my compromise with Tink was a low-maintenance (stop laughing), less costly birthday party option. A sleepover.

Lord have mercy on my soul.

Her original list was 4 girls, but I absolutely refuse to leave well-enough alone (and I also remember what it was like to feel left out), so I encouraged her to invite 2 other girls that had recently invited her to their parties. She delivered invitations for 6 friends to join us for a Saturday night of food and fun and lots and LOTS of squealing, and whaddaya know - they all showed up. Yippee.

Friday afternoon I realized I had signed up to do this on daylight savings weekend. Are you friggin' kidding me? 

The girls started to arrive around 5:30 as requested. One girl's father said to me as he turned to leave from dropping her off, "I'll be here at 7 tomorrow morning." Are you friggin' kidding me?

Tink and I decided that make-your-own mini pizzas would go over well for dinner.  After about an hour of playing in the backyard, I called the girls in to assemble their pizzas. I set out crusts, sauce, pepperoni, ground beef, and cheese. Everyone seemed excited about this prospect and built their pizzas with gusto. They talked and joked and laughed and...didn't eat. After the girls left the table, I went in to clean up and saw that four of the girls had left at least half of their MINIATURE pizzas on their plates. One of them didn't take a single bite. Not one. Are you friggin' kidding me?

After dinner, one of the girls somehow got a tiny cut under her fingernail. This is one of the girls that was originally not going to be invited because as Tink warned me, "I don't want to be mean, but sometimes she's a little weird." Duly noted, Tink. Maybe next time I'll listen. The girl sat at the kitchen counter looking at me and exclaiming, "Is that a cut under my fingernail? I got a cut under my fingernail! Is it bleeding? It tastes like blood! It's bleeding! What do I do?! LOOK AT THE BLOOD!" Are you friggin' kidding me?

Around 11 p.m. I suggested they get in their pj's and set out their sleeping bags. I told them they didn't have to go to sleep yet, but not to forget about the time change and that some of their parents were going to pick them up early for church. I went upstairs to attempt to get some sleep, and was awoken by Charming at 1:30 a.m. to tell me that he could still hear them downstairs (apparently they never stop waking up Mom to take care of shit). I went downstairs to politely remind them that it is now time to shut it down and go to sleep. "REMEMBER THE TIME CHANGE," I said. I went back upstairs and laid there for 20 or so minutes, noting that the noise did not seem to subside at all. I went back downstairs to find that although I thought I said "It's time to go to sleep", I obviously must have said, "Turn on all the downstairs lights and start playing a board game and don't forget to be really loud about it." Are you friggin' kidding me?

At this point I got a teeny bit angry and said, "Hey, you guys remember 20 minutes ago when I told you it was 1:30? Well, guess what. The time just changed and now it's 3 a.m. and y'all are going to have to shut. it. down. or I'm gonna get mean. And I reeealllly don't want to get mean." Then the lights magically went out and that was that. 

The next morning, because I had other people's children under my charge, I dusted off my "super responsible parent" hat and was up at dawn so I could wake the child whose father was going to be picking her up at 7 a.m. Which felt like 6 a.m. You know, because of the time change. She got up and ready, and I sat in the front room waiting so I could open the door before he knocked and woke up everyone else in the house because I'm considerate like that. 7:10. 7:15. 7:18. Since this seemed like a guy that was on time ALL the time, I asked the girl if she wanted to call and see if he still planned on picking her up around 7. She replies, "Oh, yeah. He texted me and said they changed church because of the time change and he'll be here at 8." Are you friggin' kidding me? I'm sure he's a very nice man, but I still have the urge to kick him in the teeth over that one.

After downing 3 cups of coffee like it was water, I made the girls cinnamon rolls and bacon for breakfast, took a shower, and waited for the rest of the parents to come claim their children. After they were all gone, Tink came over to hug me. I asked her if she enjoyed her party and she said, "Mom, that sleepover was fun. But, after a few hours, I kind of just wanted to spend time with my family." And then she asked Dimples if he wanted to hang out. Are you friggin' kidding me?

We might actually be doing something right.

A click here gets the word out that I'm doing something right. Can you spare a click?

Thursday, March 7, 2013

When Toys Make Me Feel Like a Pyromaniac

There are some toys that creep my out, y'all. Toys that just aren't right. Toys that need to be outlawed. Because toys are supposed to bring you happiness and joy...not make you soil yourself and leave you paralyzed with fear.

Have you heard of Furby? It was originally launched in the late 90's and made a real comeback last year. It reminds me a lot of Gizmo from "The Gremlins", and it's just about as creepy. I read a blog post around Christmas about someone getting a Furby for their kid. A lady left a comment re-telling a story of when she had one when she was younger. She told of how she let the batteries die and instead of replacing them, she tossed little Furby in the closet all Toy Story style and eventually forgot about it. You feel sorry for little ol' Furby, right? Wait. One night A COUPLE OF YEARS LATER while the girl was sleeping, poor forgotten Furby buried in the closet somehow sucked enough of the remaining battery to "wake up" and say...wait for it..."It's dark in here." WHATHEFUUUUUU?!? I'd have to light that sonbitch on fire.

Then there's the infamous "Ouija Board". I couldn't hardly even type that, y'all. That game freaked my shit when I was in junior high. Here's how it went down. I spent the night with a friend and their home phone hadn't been working for a couple of days. We couldn't even entertain ourselves by calling all our other friends that weren't there (pre cell phone days and all). What's a teenager to do with no telephone? Well, we decided we'd play that "game". We were joking around and asking it stupid questions, each of us accusing the other of pushing the little game piece thingy. Then one of us got the bright idea to ask it the question, "If you're real, show us a sign." And that's when the telephone rang. The phone that had been out of service for the past two days. You have never seen two adolescent girls exit a house so fast in your life. I'm surprised I ever went back. I'd like to say we lit the thing on fire, but we were too scared. They can actually probably light themselves on fire. Great. Now I've dug up this memory and I doubt I'll sleep tonight. The things I do for you guys.

There will be no picture of the Ouija Board because I refuse to Google it to find one.
I don't even know if they still make them and I really don't care because NO. 

A couple of weeks ago my kids found this game in one of our many "junk" drawers called "20 Q". Have you heard of it? We bought it years ago for a road trip and I had forgotten about it. It's a little handheld electronic game that has you think of something - anything - and it then asks a series of (fairly general) questions to try and derive the answer to what it is. It freaks me out because I swear it reads minds. We're so blown away by this stupid game that we won't even say what our item is out loud because we're convinced it can hear us. Don't judge. We always pick things that we are sure there is no way it will guess. But it does. Almost every time. Here's an example of the questions and answers we gave it last night (you can choose either yes, no, sometimes, or unknown as your answer).

1. Vegetable Animal Mineral Other? Other
2. Do you hold it when you use it? Yes
3. Is it made of plastic? No
4. Is it a common household object? Yes
5. Does it bring joy to people? Yes
6. Is it flat? No
7. Does it get wet? Yes
8. Can you see through it? Sometimes
9. Is it cold? Sometimes
10. Does it open? Yes
11. Can you recycle it? No
12. Is it tasty? No
13. Is it clear? Sometimes
14. Can you smell it? Yes
15. Does it break if dropped? Yes
16. Is it colorful? Yes
17. Is it round? No
18. Does it smell sweet? No
19. Is it fragile? Yes
20. Is it larger than a pound of butter? No

At this point it asked, "Is it a perfume bottle?" Our answer is no (although that was a good guess). When that happens, it asks 5 more questions.

21. Can it be re-filled? No
22. Does it have a good smell? No
23. Does it come in a box? No
24. Do you wear it? Yes
25. Is it soft? No

Do YOU know what it is? No. You don't. Because how the hell would you know from those questions? And seeing them written down like that freaks me out even more.

"Is it fingernail polish?"

Yes. It is fingernail polish. Shit on a shingle it guessed fingernail polish.

Other items it has guessed include chapstick, dog collar, swingset, coyote (why didn't it just guess "dog"?), and creepiest of all, itself. As in our object was the game '20 Q' and its guess was "Is it 20Q?"

Now, if you'll excuse me...I've gotta go start a fire.

  My blog's not creepy (right?), so vote for it here!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

I Won't Apologize for Being a "Mediocre" Mom

I have my moments. My "I'm a kickass Mom" moments. I cater to my kids' every whim on their birthdays and the first day of school. I go to school parties and sometimes I even volunteer to bring stuff! I do my best to make sure Christmas is a balance of Christian celebration, childhood magic, and wonder. I try like hell not to fall asleep and forget about the ding dang tooth fairy. We go on memorable family vacations, which I document with eleventy thousand pictures.

But day to day, my approach to parenting is somewhat of a "less is more" approach. Some call it mediocrity. Whatever. I offer no apologies for it.

I will not apologize for not entertaining my children every waking minute of the day. It's called imagination. They should learn to use it on occasion.

I will not apologize for NOT taking my children to the amusement park or the zoo or the pizza arcade extravaganza (hell) every time they have a day off school. We'll do these things sometimes, and they'll be a lot of fun and exciting and special when we do. But sometimes a day off is good for just that...a day OFF.

I will not apologize for occasionally "ignoring" my children while I use the computer, or play on my iPad, or use the phone. Because most of the time I will give them my undivided attention. It's better they learn that, while they are the center of MY universe, that won't be the case when they enter the great big world of "a whole bunch of other people with agendas all their own who aren't going to heed your beckon call".

I will not apologize for expecting my children to behave like respectful human beings at home, in school, and in public. When they choose to do otherwise, there will be consequences. I will not rush to their side and blame ill behaviors on peers, teachers, or society in general. They need to learn about taking responsibility and holding oneself accountable.

I will not apologize for not making a big production out of things my children should be doing anyway. They will be expected to turn in school assignments when they are due as well as make every effort to maintain decent grades. I will encourage them and offer every resource available to support them throughout their education. Their reward for doing these things will be a diploma. I will beam with pride at their accomplishment. When they get a job, the reward for doing said job will be a paycheck. Neither college professors nor future employers will throw a parade in their honor for simply doing what is expected. There is no sense in setting that precedent now.

I will not apologize for making my children do their own school projects. I'll willingly help where help is needed, but I've "been there and done that". And I did it by myself. There was a sense of pride when I turned in projects that were truly mine, and I want them to feel that pride, too. I've done my time at the science fair thankyouverymuch.

I will not apologize for making my children learn to "earn their keep" on occasion. A good work ethic is not going to appear out of thin air. 

I will not apologize for sometimes saying "no" to things even if we can afford them. Because that's a word they need to learn to hear on occasion. And because a lot of the time I'll say "yes".

I will not apologize for not escorting my children back to their bed when they creep into mine in the middle of the night. I honestly don't believe that I'll look back on these days and say, "I sure do regret all those mornings I woke up to my babies' sweet sleeping faces." This phase will pass. All too soon, it will pass.

But most of all, I will not apologize for loving my children enough to do all of the above. While it may not work for everyone, and while I am by no means the best parent, I'm doing the best I know how and it's what works for me. It must work for my kids, too. Because I know without a doubt that they go to bed every night knowing they are loved. And that's really all that matters.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Being Positive. The Project. The bPositive Project.

Today I'm going to try my hand at motivational speaking. I'm a woman of many talents, after all. Hey. It's rude to laugh at people, you know.

Anyway, if you came over hoping for a little drinking and a cussin'....wait! Don't go!

Something really exciting happened for me not long ago. I'm sure it's not a big deal for a seasoned blogger, but for a newbie like myself it was sort of a validation. Validation that I'm (somewhat) capable out here in the blogosphere. When you're new to something, and a little unsure of yourself, a little bit of validation can go a long way.

The exciting thing that happened was that I was contacted by a company called bPositive. It's a new company that I hadn't heard of before, so I checked out their website. I loved them immediately. They are a company that focuses solely on spreading positivity, and supporting others who do the same. How could anyone turn down an opportunity to work with a company with that kind of philosophy?

When you've got kids, you see a LOT (and I mean A LOT) of animated movies. I don't usually mind it, because most of the time they have a great message. We went to see 'The Lorax' when it was in theaters. The film was cute, and passed along a surface message that we need to be environmentally conscious. I call it a "surface message" because it's the obvious one. But, if you pay attention, there is really more to it. The same principal needs to be applied to society. We have a responsibility to foster each other. If we don't, basic human decency is at risk of extinction. If you watch even five minutes of the news, it's hard not to feel like it is already happening.

As we were leaving the theater, a song called "Celebrate the World" played during the rolling credits. It caught my attention and I stood and listened to the entire thing. I bought it on iTunes. The kids and I frequently listen to it (and belt it out) on the way to school in the morning. One of my favorite verses in the song says:

Just believe and you're almost there
Use your heart to show you care
Come on and celebrate the world

I'm so pumped about this opportunity, because I've been chomping at the bits for a chance to share this song, and it totally works for bPositive. Because that's what they are all about. Believing in yourself and opening up your heart to yourself and to others. 

bPositive sent me a kick-ass t-shirt just for checking them out. It's stretchy, but fitted in all the right places. It makes my boobs look awesome (Charming's words, not mine). They sent me a promo code so all my readers can get a cool t-shirt, too. And who doesn't need a t-shirt that's gonna make your boobs look awesome? You can feel good about your purchase because the proceeds go to a great cause in communities around the nation. So, spread the positivity. The world could really use it.

Use Promo code: "iamhappy" and get 10% off your purchase

*I was not compensated for this post. Opinions expressed are my own.