Mom Shaming…Knock it off.

Okay moms, let’s get real for a minute. I’m not one to rant on my blog or other aspects of social media, but I’m angry, saddened and disappointed with what I’ve been seeing from some mom’s out there. Since I have an online appearance, I felt that I needed to say something on this issue and hopefully inspire change.

The Mom Shaming needs to stop. Let me rephrase that…the bullying needs to stop. Parenting is hard…extremely hard and it won’t get any easier as our little ones grow up. Even though we wish they were, parenting rules are not black and white.  Civilization has evolved, creating more than one way to do things and unfortunately, there’s never a right choice, but there is a right choice for every parent and child. You are aware that not one child is created equally…yes? Why should every mom parent equally?

Mom ShamingEvery mother is free to make choices that they feel is right for THEIR child, therefore they shouldn’t be shamed, mocked or judged for doing so, especially online. Don’t get me wrong, if you see a parent doing something that is unknowingly effecting their child’s safety, then yes, please say something, but remember the key word here, unknowingly. Guide that mom gently without making her feel like a horrible mother and person.  If you can’t do this, then you need to rely on the Thumper method and don’t say anything at all.

As a newer mom still, I feel guilty all the time.  Did I spend enough quality time with my kids? Did I feed my toddler too many hotdogs because she just wouldn’t eat anything else? Did I raise my voice a little too much when she was misbehaving?  Did I let her watch too much TV? Did I work too much while she was with me? There isn’t a day that I don’t feel some guilt. I know I’m not alone. A lot of moms lay their heads on their pillows at night with similar feelings of guilt. We don’t need the knives twisted by other mothers.  We don’t need to feel like horrible mothers from women we look up to, women we respect and women who should have our backs. Harsh judgement coming from these women deepens the wounds.
Some of these women are simply, bullies. News flash…we aren’t in school anymore; we aren’t children; it’s time to grow up. Imagine having a playdate or just a coffee with another mom. As you sit across the table, staring into her exhausted, overwhelmed, yet loving eyes, would you harshly shame her for something she is doing that simply differs from you? Would you make her question her maternal skills? Would you bully her? No. So why is it right to do so while hiding behind a computer screen. Half the time, you hardly know her, where she came from and what she’s going through. While you’re shaming this mother online, you’ve decided that she failed somehow as a parent and you’re making her aware of it. My question is, who’s making you aware of the sad example you’re setting for your children.

A group of children will have all been exposed to different parenting styles, but they all have at least three things in common; they’re all loved, happy and don’t know the difference.

There are different wars of all kind being fought all over the world. It’s time to bring peace to the “mommy wars”. It’s time to come together as women and mothers and provide loving advice instead of harsh judgement. It takes a village to raise a child, not an army.

 

Here we go Again…

Ok…so I know I haven’t posted for a while, but I’ve been busy chasing a toddler, touring schools, teaching writing workshops for kids and writing a fourth book. Wait…I feel like I’m forgetting something.  Oh yeah, I was also creating a tiny human.  Surprise!  Piper is proud to present her little brother, Axel James Brook!

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He’s now 1 month old and is stealing hearts everywhere.

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Here we go again…

As I was pregnant, which wasn’t an easy 9 months this time around, I was anxious about doing this all over again. My mind started to cloud, remembering what I was in for; more sleepless nights, diapers, spit up and more craziness.  Once this little man arrived, it all came back to me and I remembered what I was truly in for; more cuddles, milestones, cuteness and more love.  This is the second boy to steal my heart instantly and now I have two beautiful kids.

Three of us

 

I’m sure you’re all wondering how Piper is adjusting to the new rival.  Well, let’s just say it’s a good day when she only licks the baby once.

She loves her little brother so much…a little too much sometimes with her aggressive hugs and kisses! She’s waiting patiently for him to get bigger so she can wrestle…I mean play with him.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I hear someone waking up from his nap…signing off!

Hide ‘n Seek – Awkward Edition!

You know that moment when you realize that you’re playing a game with a toddler? If you have a toddler, then off course you do.  You think you’re simply living life and getting things done, just to find out that your toddler thought you were playing a game the whole time.  Some of these games never seem to end.  In my house, we apparently have an ongoing game of Hide and Seek.

Piper was settled (as much as she gets) colouring and having a snack so I took the opportunity to use the washroom…in peace.  I just needed a minute. I was almost finished…almost felt the sense of victory when the bathroom door violently flew open and smashed against the bathroom interior. Before I could put my heart back into my chest I heard, “I FOUND YOU, MOMMY!”.  This was followed by, “My turn for hide, count mom!”.

I knew I’d experience different things daily now that I’m a mom, but I couldn’t predict that one of them would be counting loudly while wiping and pulling up my pants.  Is it sad that I was mad that I lost that round? Like come on…if I knew it was my turn to hide, that little terd would have NEVER found me.

When it’s her turn to hide, she’s not too bad for a 2-year-old and definitely provides comedic relief.  Her basic strategy?  If she can’t see us, then we obviously can’t see her.  The best is when she covers herself with her blankie and simply stands in the middle of a room.  It’s funny how she seems to gather the hiding concept when it’s time for bed.  It takes longer then I’d want to admit to find her little toddler butt then.

Tell me this…if my toddler wants to play an endless game, why can’t it be, Sleeping Lions? I know you remember that game.

hide n seek

Holiday School Giveaway

Tis the season of giving, so this year I wanted to donate a class set of books (30 books) to a school in need. See the image for info and rules. You can also nominate a school by commenting on this post with the school’s name and reason for nomination.

Happy Holidays!

 

Holiday ContestHoliday ContestHoliday Contest

 

It Happened…

I’ve seen this on TV, and heard about this in the ‘mommy world’, but it finally happened to me.

I just put Piper down for a nap and was getting ready to make my lunch when I noticed something on my arm. After 2 years of motherhood, I finally asked that horrible question out loud, “is it chocolate or poop?”.

Yep, there it was on my arm, a brown gunk of question.  Since I recently changed a Piper Bomb, you’d think that I wouldn’t need to ask that question. Well, if you knew me, you’d know that I just had chocolate too (it’s pretty much a daily thing). 

I’m sure you’re wondering what I did.  Did I just figure it was chocolate and lick it?  ARE YOU NUTS?  No, I didn’t just lick it.  I have the worst luck in the world and was not about to play the poop’n chocolate roulette game.  Besides, the chances of me letting chocolate escape is pretty slim. What I did do is practice this thing called ‘adulting’ and washed it off.  I took it as finally getting the last initiation into the Mommy Club.

To ease everyone’s curiosity of the actual answer…don’t worry, it was totally poop.

My Toddler’s a Monster and it’s my Mother’s Fault!

So…the time has come.  My sweet, loving, little girl has entered the ‘terrible twos’.  I never thought I’d use an old cliche to describe a big moment in my little girl’s life, but there it is.  She may look like a cute and innocent little girl, but don’t let the pigtails fool you.  She can throw down like the best of them, especially when she doesn’t get her 12+ hours of beauty sleep.  Sometimes there has been moments when the first solution that popped in my mind was to book an exorcism, especially when she breaks into her ‘Batman’ voice.  I have to admit that sometimes, I have a monster on my hands and yes, you read the headline correctly, it’s totally my mother’s fault.

Those of you who may know my mother are probably wondering how a wonderful, big-hearted lady could be to blame for my toddler’s terrific tantrums. It’s simple really; she had a monster toddler of her own and one day she did the unthinkable.

I don’t recall the specific date, but a mere 15 years ago, a beautiful, talented girl entered her teen years. (if it wasn’t obvious, I’m talking about myself…but should be obvious) Ok, so I and my mother got into another little argument.  Never able to get in the last word, mom finally succeeded and said the well known words that would initiate THE CURSE.  Just before I could slam my door, she shouted, “When you have a daughter, I hope she’s JUST LIKE YOU!”.  There it was; the curse.  Fast forward to now and here I am, with a daughter who is just like me. Well played, mom. Well played.

I have to say, I’m only surviving the curse because Piper isn’t as monstrous as I was at her age.  My toddler self would have had a lot to teach her and would have won in a tantrum-off any day.  I’m pretty lucky that way as my lovely daughter only turns into her monster self every now and then.  Come to think of it, I’m pretty sure it’s only during a full moon. As much as her banshee screams are usually inappropriate, I have to admit that part of me, where the stubborn, strong-willed toddler still exists, is a little proud.  Why is Piper not as bad as I was?  I’m pretty sure its a result of my level headed mother-in-law never activating the curse on my husband, cancelling out some of the attitude.

Now, when the time comes and I’m having an argument with a 16 year old Piper, will I say those simple words and initiate the curse again? You bet your sweet blog I will!

Monster Toddler

A Letter to Piper on her 2nd Birthday

Dear Piper,

As I sit here, trying to wrap my head around the situation we find ourselves in; I’m struggling to find the words. It’s in disbelieve that I say you’re officially two years old. Just when I was going to say the old cliche, “where did the time go?”, I smile, knowing exactly where the time went. It went to smiling, laughing and loving our way into many cherished memories. I try not to shed a tear for the time that went by way too fast, but smile in anticipation as I await more changes and milestones. 

This was a great year as our family and I got to hear you talk more and more (you must get that from your dad) and see how much more you could do and understand. Everyday you surprised me with another thing you could do. Sometimes it was adding another letter to your ABC vocabulary, knowing how to put on your shoes (hopefully you’ll learn how to match them soon) and knowing who the people around you are. Your personality was strong from the start, but it shown through even more. You’re just like your favourite characters on Mickey Mouse. You’re completely silly like Goofy, loving like Minnie, smart like Mickey and you occasionally pee on the floor, like Pluto. All in all, we love every piece of you and still can’t believe how much you enriched our lives with that contagious, little grin.

I can’t tell you how much you fill my soul with pride. I’m always gently reminding you of your manners, and to say, “thank-you” a lot. Really, I’m the one who should be saying it to you. Thank-you for the million hugs and kisses. Thank-you for the giggles and surprises. Thank-you for biting your father more than you bite me. Thank-you for being you and making everyday a lot better. Thank-you for introducing me to the Bubble Guppies, whom made me question everything I thought I knew about the ocean. Last but not least, thank-you for making me a mom.

Happy Birthday my sweet and feisty, Piper.

Love,

Mom

PS – Here’s another special birthday movie and a glimpse into the past year.

 

 

Parents vs. Computers

It’s a well known fact that a lot of people around my age and younger suffer from one common problem. It’s that frustrating time that leads to horrible, unspeakable and non forgettable events. What start’s this new phenomenon? It’s pretty simple. It starts the moment our parents decide to get a new computer or smartphone. I’m pretty sure at least 80% of you out there know exactly what I mean.

We all know what happens when that decision is made…we get called in! Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind helping, but it’s that slight disconnect between our two worlds that cause the big issues. It’s the computer lingo that we just understand, even if we’ve never heard them before. Our experience allows even the laziest of terms to be absorbed and understood. 

I’m not going into a lot of the specifics of the arguments that my (lovely) mother and myself have had over her many computer and smartphone woes, but I will give you an example of how they ALWAYS ends. 

Mom: “I’m sorry, but I don’t know anything about these things!”

Me: “Then stop trying to use them!”

I know…I’m pretty helpful.

At the end of the day, I need to remind myself that these people that we call our parents weren’t around these devices for the majority of their lives and there are things that I ‘ll have to full-out explain, probably more than once, no matter how impatient I tend to be. Oh and laughing at some of their responses probably isn’t the best solution either….no matter how ridiculous and freak’n hilarious they sound! 

I came across this Amy Schumer sketch and wanted to share it, because let’s face it; we’ve all been there. I showed my mother while she was actually at my place (I couldn’t send it to her because she wouldn’t have been able to open it) and her reaction was priceless. At one time she said, “Ahhh, I had that issue too!”. Please note, that she was agreeing with the mother in the sketch. 

I also wanted to add that my mother in law recently got a new computer and actually purchased the additional tech support….bless you; you wonderful and wise woman.

This post is all in good fun, so hopefully my mom isn’t too embarrassed by it. Luckily, she thought it was funny when my then, 1.5 year old, figured out how to answer her new smartphone… WAY before she did. 😉

 

 

 

Crossroads

The other day, I reached a critical, “should I or shouldn’t I” moment.  You know what I’m talking about. Those moments when something happens and you have two clear roads to take and not a lot of time to take one.  I’m sure you’re thinking it had something to do with being a mom and making those tough parenting decisions.  Nope, that’s not what I’m talking about. However, I did have one of those moments on the weekend and to summarize the ending of that situation, I did let my 21 month old eat right out of the peanut butter jar for lunch.

I’m talking about my encounter with a giant bug.  Now, don’t get me wrong, I grew up on a farm and am one of the few girls not afraid of bugs. This however, this was not a bug; this was a mutant. According to my husband, it was a mosquito. No, it was the mother of all mosquitos. It was the mosquito that all of the others are afraid of. It must have been rejected from the cast of Jurassic Park because it was too big. That is the only logical reason I can see for it to be in my house.

Here’s what happened…

I was finishing chopping some vegetables and went to bring the peelings and stems to the garbage when I found it.  It was on my wall, surely trying to suck the insulation out.  You’re probably wondering why it caused a crossroads situation. Well, remember what I was doing prior to seeing it? That’s right, still in my right hand was the giant butcher’s knife that I was using to chop the veggies. Can you guess what my first instinct was? Many know me as a logical person, so naturally, the first logical road to take was to stab the thing that nightmares are made of. 

There it was.  I had to choose between two roads.  Man, the look in my husband’s eyes when he realized I was actually contemplating stabbing a, how did he put it – oh yeah, “a stupid mosquito”.

I’m sure you’re wondering which road I took. Well, I decided to put down the knife and do the other logical thing. I killed it with a potato. 

I’d like the world to know, that I only took the second road because the knife would have ruined my perfectly good wall and then I would have needed to throw out a perfectly good knife. Not to mention that my husband would have taken away my knife privileges in the kitchen again.

Seems about right...

Seems about right…