Friday, July 23, 2010

Book Club: Take Two

Today was beach day at book club this week!  We read The Seashore Book by Charlotte Zolotow (a must read, in my opinion), looked for seashells, created a beach collage, and played at the water table.  Fun was had by all (I think).

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.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Picky Schmicky

If I had a nickel for every time I, or someone else with young kids has said, "My kids are picky eaters" I'd be getting a pedicure every week until I turned 88.

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!
Friday, July 16, 2010

First "Sit A While" Book Club

Hey NorthMetroDCMommies!  Here's a link to the first ever "Sit a While" Book Club that took place this morning.

  We had a great time, and we're looking forward to the next meeting.  There's still a couple spots left!  Sgn up here.

It Gets Better

A friend I went to high school with had a baby about 3 months ago.  The past few days she's been posting on Facebook status updates like: "Been in my PJs all day," or, "Completely exhausted."  The one that got the most comments was, "I feel so isolated." 

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.
Wednesday, July 14, 2010

NMDCM Needs Your Help

NMDCM Needs your help!

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.

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