So now what? Here is this small entity that she now must nurture, feed and do everything for. Once going to the bathroom was a simple necessity, it is now a luxury. Oh the baby is asleep for 5 minutes she can go pee!! Only to get in there, start her business and WAAAHHH!!!!!! Eating? Oh, you mean the bite that she gets to take between cleaning up the spit-up of curdled milk or formula and changing the diaper? And don't get me started on trying to figure out just what to do with a child all day. I mean come on, how long can you dangle a toy just out of reach of them? Or make the same nonsensical sounds over and over and over again? Before she added the royal title of Mom to her resume she could look forward to stimulating adult conversation when and where she wanted. It didn't take her an hour just to get out the door (after she was dressed and ready herself that is). Inviting people over was not a diplomatic relations of nap times. If she works then coming home was the relaxing part of the day where she got to make a leisurely meal, watch some tv or read a book then head to bed as she wanted. Now she's scrambling to get food made, eaten and a shower before trying to get some sleep.
Don't get me wrong, parenting is very rewarding. I would never trade my little girls smiles, laughs and "I love you" for anything. But let's face it, it's also one of the hardest things you'll ever do. Climbing Mt. Everest? HAH! While physically taxing I'd like to see some of those people do it while attempting to entertain a 3 month old for the entire day without losing some semblance of their sanity. I will admit that I know some moms who never struggle with just what do they do with this squiggly person who hangs on their every action.
What I'm pointing out is that it's very hard to do, no matter your situation. Especially when all those well wishers have left. All those people who brought you food for the first week or so, where have they gone? How do you figure out what to do and how to do it? The answer? Friends!! Maybe you're one of the lucky ones and have friends who are moms with kids close to your child's age. Maybe you're living where you grew up and have a lot of people who are willing to come over and watch the baby for a little bit. I know some moms who I think are fortunate enough to live with family that will do most of the cooking and cleaning (they beg to differ on the "fortunate" part some days). But I also know many women who have gone from working full time to staying home and have no one to talk to. Or moms who go back to work and all the other women they work with don't have kids yet so they don't really want to (or know how to) talk about baby related things. It can be very isolating.
How do you gain those friendships? Simple, join a mom's group. And yes, this is shameless self-promotion but hey, I figure you're reading this so you already know about us. Don't just follow a blog or check things on Facebook. Those are worthwhile yes, but just how much are you interacting? Do you really feel you can say "HELP!" or get to know people just by those two methods? Do you really feel you can get good advice and empathy from Facebook people you may never have met? Why not post an introduction? Why not come to an event or ask someone with a child of similar age to meet you at a park/cafe/mall? When we were in school it sometimes took an act of courage to ask that interesting kid to play with you or sit with you for lunch. Go back to those days again and get the courage to ask someone over so you have someone to talk to. It may take a bit to really feel like someone's a close friend. But trust me, it's worth it.
Contact: Margie Gilbert, Promotions Director, TheMommiesNetwork.com
URL: http://www.themommiesnetwork.org and http://www.triadmommies.com
Greensboro, North Carolina – A mother is told not to openly breastfeed her child during a TriadMommies.com event.
On Monday, September 6, 2010, the mother of a three month old arrived at a Greensboro coffee shop for a TriadMommies.com event, only to be told by one of the owners that if she chose to breastfeed, she needed to be covered with a towel. The mother, who was not nursing at the time, discussed the situation with the owner, then left the shop voluntarily. This controversial conversation was reported locally by WGHP, and the story ran on national media outlets, including cnn.com, latimes.com and orlandosentinal.com. The owners of the coffee shop have since apologized for the incident.
The Mommies Network (TMN) fully supports a mother’s right to choose the best method for feeding her child, whether the mother chooses open or covered breastfeeding, bottle-feeding or a combination of methods. We are pleased to see that the coffee shop has implemented changes as a result of this situation to make their establishment a friendly place for breastfeeding mothers.
TMN is a 501c(3) non-profit organization founded in April 2005, and we have over 100 communities in 32 states and over 25,000 active members. Part of TMN’s mission is to help all moms find support and friendship in their local community. We welcome all mothers, regardless of their background, station in life, viewpoints or status. All mothers need local support, and TMN provides a way for mothers to connect for friendship, support and fun.
TriadMommies.com, one of over 100 communities owned and managed by The Mommies Network, is a free community for moms in Guilford and Forsyth Counties in North Carolina. If you have any questions, please visit http://www.themommiesnetwork.org, http://www.triadmommies.com or contact Margie Gilbert at Margie@themommiesnetwork.org
Well we had another Book Club on Friday, and due to my children, things didn't go quite how I wanted them to go.
Here's what went down.
But that won't stop me from planning another one. So sign up for September 24. It's gonna be great. You can plan on it.
For the complete story (and more pictures) come on over here. And to sign up for next month's book club, come on over here.
But it's true! And I don't know what to do about it! With my 3 year old, it's a little easier because I can say, "If you want dessert, you have to eat your veggies." And I'm fine with her choosing not to eat the veggies and then not getting dessert. I'll just save 'em for lunch the next day. My 1 year old is a different story. Not only does she say, "No!" but it turns into something you'd see on Smackdown! with arms flailing, food flying everywhere, and lots of screaming. I'm pretty sure I still have food on my wall from an incident in '09.
It's the constant pleading, arguing, blah, blah, blah that is so draining. Sometimes I'll give my girls their fruit or veggies that they're to have for dinner around 3:30 because it takes a good 2 hours for them to finish it. And it usually involves me saying, "Take another bite.....Don't forget to eat your apple!.....Take another bite........C'mon, eat your carrots!"
My husband and I love good food. We love to cook, and try new recipes. Sure, I have been known to get incredibly excited over KFC's popcorn chicken, and my husband is chomping at the bit to try their "Double Down" sandwich (you know, the one with the bacon for bread?). But I think that, for the most part, we model good eating habits for our girls.
Recently, I tried to get creative and tried this. Not what I'd call successful.
So tell me, mommies. Share with me your advice and wisdom. What are your tactics, tricks, mandates for getting your lovely children to eat their fruits and veggies? I'm all ears! Let me know, and I'll try them all out and follow up with a post on what worked for my picky eaters!
We had a great time, and we're looking forward to the next meeting. There's still a couple spots left! Sgn up here.
I think I told her to hang in there and to get out of the house if she could, but I wanted to say more. Like all mothers who have "made it through" those bleary eyed, emotional months, I have a good idea of what she's going through, and I remembered some of the things that I went through in my children's first year of life.
I remember once, when my oldest daughter was about 5 months old, my husband and I went out to brunch with friends in Baltimore. My daughter had been introduced to rice cereal recently, but I was still her main source of food back then. When she was born, Hadley was almost 10 pounds and I swear it was like the whole reason she decided to come out was to breastfeed. She would eat around the clock if I let her. So I was hungry. All the time. At brunch I ate what I believe was a stack of 6 or 7 pancakes, all the potatoes and bacon, plus the remaining food on my husband's plate. Then when we got home, I made myself a sandwich with potato chips and cookies on the side.
When my second daughter, Harper, was born that brought another set of challenges along with it as well. For me, there was a lot of guilt that I wasn't spending as much time with Hadley as I used to. We couldn't go to the places we used to go together as easily, or at all because of naptimes or whatever. Along with the guilt, the managing of two human beings was overwhelming at times, too. One afternoon, I had spent a ridiculous amount of time making myself a nice lunch. Just as I was finishing preparing it, Harper was ready for a nap. In the time it took me to change Harper and put her down for a nap, Hadley had taken my lunch off the kitchen counter, and devoured it. And to top it off, the last two pieces of bread were used to make that sandwich.
There were days (and there still are) that were filled with lots of tears. Someone told me once that entering motherhood is like visiting another country with a language you don't know how to speak and a time change that you can't quite get your body to adapt to. But everyone has their ways of figuring it out, and I know my friend is finding her way as she spends time with her daughter.
For me, it was finding some joy in a particularly stressful or tiring moment. This is not an easy skill for me to master, but every once in awhile I can do it.
I nursed Hadley until she was 11 months old. I'm not writing this to brag. I couldn't stand breastfeeding. It just wasn't for me. I didn't find it difficult, but it wasn't something that felt natural to me at all. Still, I decided I'd do it until she was 1 year old. However, by 10 months she began to lose interest and I primarily fed her in the morning when she woke up and again around 4 or 5 in the morning. Those break of dawn feedings were hard. You know it's too early to wake up, but by the time you've fed the baby and put her back to bed, you're wide awake.
The morning Hadley turned 11 months, she woke up around 4am crying. Like a robot, I went into her room, fed her, then put her back to bed. But for some reason she didn't want to go back to sleep. Too tired to have her "cry it out," and too weak to rock her to sleep, I brought her into bed with me. She fell right to sleep on top of me. I dozed on and off until about 7:30 when Hadley woke up.
Hadley was never a cuddler. She didn't like to be snuggled up with me or my husband. She was always too busy and interested in what was going on in the world. But this morning, as the sky went from black, to deep dark blue, to a white light, Hadley and I rested together. My hand on her little back, her legs draped on either side of my waist. One hand on my neck, and the other holding onto her pacifier. I didn't know it then, but it was the last time I would ever breastfeed Hadley. I look back on this moment as a little present for myself.
I'm not revealing anything new when I write that the reality of motherhood is that it's filled with unbelievable joy and unbelievable exhaustion. Every mother knows this, and my friend is finding this out as well. I supposed the "trick" is figuring out how to live with these two really strong tidal waves. Because hopefully, they'll be around for a long time.
NorthMetroDCMommies’ mission is to provide a safe, secure, FREE place for mothers to find support and encouragement from other mothers and to empower them to be better women, parents and community leaders. Part of our philosophy: We believe that, working together, mothers can change the world - one family, one neighborhood, one community at a time. NorthMetroDCMommies is a connecting force, helping us each to make a difference in our own lives, in our families and in the places we call home.
As you already know, NMDCM and The Mommies Network, our parent organization, is run by mom volunteers. We are always looking for fellow moms to help make NMDCM a better community for all of those within our membership and local community. Only have 10 min. to help out, that’s ok! Pass our name a long to fellow moms, drop off flyers, host an event, volunteer at a charitable event, or even simply posting on the board is a big help.
For management, leadership or committee positions, please visit our help wanted forum.
For celebrating the mother you are. For celebrating the mother you want to become. For celebrating the community of mothers who support you, encourage you, and help you be the best mother you can be.
This month for mothers is a time for us all to reflect on how this incredible journey began. Perhaps you were overjoyed by the prospect of motherhood and all that it entails. Perhaps you were overwhelmed. Perhaps you realized that you needed a friend who would understand you and support you in this new journey. However your journey began, we all have one thing in common - we need community to be the best mom that we can be. We need friends who will listen and provide support. We need playdates to help our children grow and develop. And we need a way to assist our fellow mothers when they require support.
Community. Friendship. Support. Understanding.
It's what The Mommies Network is all about and we are dedicated to providing that to you for FREE and to bringing it to cities across the United States so that no mom ever has to feel alone on this crazy journey called motherhood, but we cannot do this without your support. During the month of May, we are asking that you celebrate the moms in your life and celebrate yourself by donating to the organization that provides you with the support that you need and the ability to provide that support to others too, so that we can all be our best.
Donate $5 and we'll send a virtual bouquet of daisies to any mom you choose to honor along with a notification that a donation was made in their honor - just be sure to give us her e-mail address!
Make a donation of $10 and we'll make it a virtual bouquet of mixed flowers.
Donate $20 or more and we'll send your honoree virtual roses.
And we'll provide you with a special avatar or signature graphic so that you can let others know that you care enough to support The Mommies Network.
Please, take this opportunity to celebrate your own motherhood in the month of May and make a donation to The Mommies Network so that we can continue to offer a source of support and community to the moms across our nation. Working together we can change the world - one family, one neighborhood, one community at a time.
The Mommies Network
This event will include a community sale, family activities, vendors and showcase our sponsors who are dedicated to supporting our families and local commerce here in the North Metro DC area. In addition to the vendors, the Family Fun Sale will include a wonderful raffle and bake sale.
To participate in the Sale, please email Jessica at jessica@NorthMetroDCMommies.com for registration details. NMDCM will allow “Space Share,” if you would like to go in on a space with another vendor. You, as the vendor, must partner with another vendor on your own and you may split the cost of the space between you. Both vendors must submit an application with their portion of payment—we will not reserve the space until we have received both applications and payment from each party participating in the booth share. Please note that all applications are subject to review and acceptance in accordance with the mission of NMDCM as listed in the text above and all tables must be suitable for small eyes.
As this is also a fundraiser to support our site and charitable event for Cookies for Kid’s Cancer, we suggest each commercial vendor submit an item for the raffle, baked item or provide a family/children’s activity. This can include but is not limited to: Gift Certificates, Products you sell, etc. The only requirement we have is that it is “Family Friendly”, PG-13 and valued at $5 or greater.
All TMN member paid vendor booth applications postmarked before May 14th, will receive a $5 discount. The $5 TMN member discount will only apply per space, not per person. Spaces are limited and will be assigned in the order that applications are received and paid in full. All applications must be postmarked by May 22, 2010.
We hope you can join us for our 2010 Family Fun Sale. Your participation and support are greatly appreciated!
Spaces are 10x10 ft.
Commercial Business/Vendor- $30 (per space)
Non-member Vendor- $20 (per space)
TMN Membership Discount* - $15 (per space) (*application must be post marked on or before May 14, 2010, to receive this discount! If postmarked after May 14th, fee will be $20 per space.)
Vendors keep 100% of their profits.
We will provide beverages, light snacks, goodie bags for the women and a children's activity.
This event will be held on May 1 with a starting time around 2:30PM.
If you would like to help in anyway (goodie bag donations, volunteering at the event, providing snacks, etc.), please let us know.
Please email email@example.com if you would like to arrange for us to pick-up donated items.
If you would like to make a monetary donation you may use PayPal
Thanks, everyone! This is going to be an awesome event and a great way to help out women and children in need.
Relearning the ABCs
My three year old daughter’s favorite song is “The ABCs.” The moment she wakes up, she is singing it. She sings it during breakfast, or on the way to the park. She sings it when she’s happy or sad. It’s as if the letters A-Z hold some secret to life, and saying them over and over will remind her of this secret.
One afternoon Hadley and I were playing with blocks when she said, “Mama? Can we talk?”
“Sure.” I said and gulped nervously. What in the world could we be embarking on?
“What do you want to talk about?” I asked.
“The ABCs.” Hadley stated matter-of-factly.
Hadley has taken it upon herself to teach this song to her sister, Harper. Harper is two years younger than Hadley, and doesn’t quite appreciate the importance of knowing these 26 lovely letters. This doesn’t stop Hadley. A song this important needs to be sung over and over again.
Once, when I was getting Harper ready for a nap, Hadley thought she’d help out by singing the ABCs. With the guitar her Uncle Geoff bought her for Christmas.
This was a particularly difficult morning. I hadn’t showered or had any coffee, my drug of choice. None of us had slept well the night before, and I was feeling desperate to get Harper down for a nap.
Just as I had swaddled Harper up and begun rocking her, I saw Hadley’s forehead and eyes peak out from behind the bedroom door.
“Harper’s almost asleep. ” I tried to say it as quietly as possible.
Except Hadley took this as her cue to come into the bedroom. Guitar in hand.
“Is Harper sleeping?” she asked well above a whisper.
“Not yet, but almost.” My whisper probably sounded more like a whimper.
Hadley proceeded to sit on the floor and place the guitar on her lap. “This will help Harper get to sleep.” She told me, pointing to the guitar.
What could I do to stop what I feared was going to be the world’s worst lullaby? If I raised my voice, I’d wake up Harper, and I might’ve hurt Hadley’s feelings. She was, after all, trying to help. All I could do was watch.
She lifts her hand in the air and lets it fall on the guitar, strumming one loud, long unmelodic chord. Harper’s eyes bolt open. I’m still swaying from side to side in a pathetic attempt to erase what is going on.
“A, B, C, D, E, F, G.” Hadley sang as she strummed the guitar, thus ending Harper’s two second nap.
For as tired as I get of “The ABCs,” I know there will be a day when I’ll be wishing Hadley still sang this song. So I enjoy it as much as I can – even when I’m unshowered and uncaffeinated and there are no naps in sight.
On a late afternoon in spring, Hadley, Harper, and I decide to go outside to blow bubbles.
“Can we put some clothes on you?” I ask Hadley, hoping she will agree to taking off the pajamas she’s had on all day.
“No. I want to keep my Elmo pajammies on.”
“Fine, but we need to put shoes on.”
“Can I wear my tap dancing shoes please, Mama?”
“Sure.” I say.
Outside, I have Harper in the bjorn, who’s kicking away watching Hadley jump after the bubbles I’m blowing. Hadley stops suddenly when she sees a squirrel run past on a branch in a nearby tree.
“Hi squirrel!” she yells. The squirrel stops for a second, then darts away.
“Squirrel! Come back! I want to say hello to you!” Hadley explains.
Hadley’s back is to me. She has her hands on her hips as she watches the squirrel go away. About 30 smiling Elmos’ cover her back and legs. She shifts her weight from one black “tap dance” shoe to the next. She is a sight.
“A, B, C, D, E, F, G.” she begins.
I open my mouth to sing along but someone beats me to it.
“H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P.” my husband walks up the sidewalk, home from work.
“Daddy!” Hadley exclaims. He picks her up but keeps singing.
“Q, R, S.” he begins.
“T, U, V.” Hadley is jubilant. And then the three of us bring it home:
“W, X, Y, and Z.” Hadley’s bopping up and down on my husband’s hip, her arms moving in the air as if she’s directing. Harper squeals in delight and I give her legs a little squeeze.
“Now I know my ABCs! Next time won’t you sing with me?”
Next time, and always.
Callie is a freelance writer and mommy to Hadley (3) and Harper (1). She has been published in Christian Teacher, Christian Home and School, and the online magazine The Mommy Times. You can read more about Hadley and Harper here: http://notesfromnaptime.blogspot.com, or read about the books the girls are reading here: http://sit-a-while.blogspot.com.
- Saying, "listen to the toothbrush make its brushing sound!"
- Giving your child a toothbrush so she can brush your teeth while you brush hers.
- Letting her face the mirror and watch while you brush her teeth.
- Challenging her to keep her mouth open while you sing a song (her favorite song, happy birthday, or Raffi's "Brush Your Teeth")
- Set a timer, and let her brush her teeth first, then when the timer beeps, it's your turn.
- Mom's Night Out (MNO) At Guapo's in Gaithersburg
- Gaithersburg St. Patrick's Day Parade
- Family Bounce Night in Clarksburg
- Family Dinner Out at Potomac Pizza in The Kentlands
- NMDCM's Annual Easter Egg Hunt
Fill an empty ice tray with leftover cold coffee for smoothies with pick-me-up or homemade iced-coffee drinks. You can even make your own iced mocha by blending low-fat chocolate milk with iced coffee cubes.
Carrots are delicious with chocolate. Make your favorite chocolate baked good "grate," by grating a carrot finely and stirring it into your store-bought brownie mix, favorite chocolate cake or muffin recipes.
Scoop of Sour Cream
Use the last bit of low-fat sour cream at the bottom of the container to add creaminess to your favorite salad dressing.
From Leftovers to Lunch
Don't throw out that last cup of cooked pasta dressed with tomato sauce because it's not quite enough to make a meal. Add two cups of wilted baby spinach, or a cup of steamed broccoli (or other veggie) and top with chunky jarred tomato salsa.
Handful of Whole-Grain Cereal
Crush your last handful of whole-grain cereal and use it in place of breadcrumbs in your next batch of meatballs or meatloaf. Don't have ground meat on hand? Freeze the cereal right in the plastic bag that it comes in until you're ready.
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