6/21/17

Stop Temper Tantrums Instantly (Works For All Ages!)







I recently came across an article about, "This Dad's "Silly" Potato Trick Miraculously Stopped a Toddler Temper Tantrum."  I thought to myself, Please, tell me how to stop a todder temper tantrum; I have a son and husband driving me crazy over here!

It turns out, a crazed dad, after a day of his toddler son being nutzo,told his son to, "Stop being so salty." The dad said, "that's when it clicked." He grabbed a potato (Yes, a real one) and handed it to his son, and told him he had to hold it until his mood changed.

Then the dad says, on reddit:

"He thought it was so silly and his mood changed," he wrote. "At first he was confused and wanted to put it down, but I told him that he will absolutely under no circumstances put the potato down until he's in a better mood to compose himself." His toddler calmed down and the world was spared. 

Um...

Kudos to that dad for finding a trick that works on his son. I, however, wouldn't even fathom giving that a try. If I handed my son a potato during a temper tantrum, he would throw it. Hard. 

No friggin doubt. 

If, like me, you wouldn't dare give your child a weapon during a temper tantrum, I have another trick and it's:


  • FREE 
  • Guranteed to change the mood instantly 
  • Works on just about anyone having a temper tantrum, freaking out, throwing a fit, having a bad day... 
  • The best part, is you will enjoy it emensely, too. 




During my son's toddler years, I must've tried a million different ways to stop the temper tantrums. I tried to ignore him. I tried to hold him. I tried to rationalize with him. Which is so stupid since you can't rationalize with the irrationale. 

Then, by accident, I found the answer. 

My darling child was throwing an epic temper tantrum. He wanted ice cream, before lunch. Rather than give his rediculous whinning and pissing-on a second of my time, I got out my phone to bide my time until he wore himself out protesting my evil mean mom ways. 

And that's when it's clicked. 

I saw the fart app my five-year-old begged me to downloaded, and opened it. I started pressing the fart sounds and, and told him that was all I could hear and smell coming out of his mouth. 



Withing seconds, my once screaming, whining and flailing toddler was all laughs and smiles. And so was I!

That fart app has been my saving grace. Every time I need to redirect my son's attention or stop him from throwing a tantrum, I just bust out my fart app and start smashing the soundboard.

There's even Apple Watch fart apps!



Within seconds, he's laughing and completely forget what he was pissed off about in the first place.  The fart app NEVER fails me. It's also helped my kid relaize I'm not playing into the Bullshit behavior. He wants to talk, he can talk. He wants to throw a fit, I'll throw a fart.

If you want to stop your child, friend, partner, co-worker, mom or dad from being annoying, download the fart app and use it against them. It'll work everytime, becuse I don't care who you are, farts are funny.  


BTW: There bunches of FREE Fart Apps available. No need to spend a penny, the free ones do the trick!

You're welcome. 

         

6/19/17

Respectful Co-Parenting: 5 Things To Know







A friend once told me, "Not even infidelity tests a marriage like being new parents." Not knowing both sides, thankfully, I can only imagine it's true because after becomging parents, I went from having a beautiful, loving, respectful marriage, to one that was riddled with resentment, bickering, tears, and at times, full on yelling. The stress of being new parents, responsible for the most precious little miracle was a lot to handle, for both of us. Then, we did the worst thing possible; stopped communicating. 

Oh, if I could turn back time...

Since I can't turn back time to help my marriage navigate respectful co-parenting, I can, hopefully, help you and your parenting partner through the struggle. The following are my top five tips for respectful co-parenting. 

  1. Communicate 

When I say communicate, screaming and yelling are not going to cut it, ever. Trust me.  No matter how mad or upset you may be, you've got to keep your cool and talk through the issue, otherwise, the issue will never get resolved. 

Communication is key in the early days to understand each other’s ideas and methods for parenting, and learning to calmly and respectfully talk through the differences.


  1. Be Respectful

I’m not sure why this one was so difficult for me since before baby, I had so much respect and admiration for my very strong and talented husband. Then, I had our son.

For some reason, my inner know-it-all Princess bitch took over my ability to listen and be respectful of my husband's parenting methods. I was constantly critiquing everything he did. Even basic stuff like, holding, handling, changing, feeding, swaddling, bathing... I was constantly standing over him.  I was a maniac. I see that now. (Sorry, Baby, I love you!)

Being respectful of each other from the beginning is beyond beneficial to your marital- relationship, co-parenting rhythm and baby's well-being.   

3. Trust Each Other 

This one was so hard for me to grasp. I was so sure NO ONE could care for my baby as well as me, not even his father. I was afraid to leave him alone for too long or trust him to follow my long list of dos and dont's and stick to baby's routine. Oh what an asshole I was. 

I hurt my husband’s feelings so many times by not showing him that I trusted him to do what was best for his son.  Every time I would leave the house or let him do the something, I would give him a huge speech about how and when it should be done. This was so damning to our relationship.  

Have a little faith in each other. It'll make life so much easier.

  1. Take Turns

Taking turns is such a wonderful way for both parents to test out their own parenting methods, and bond with their baby. Ideally, without the other parent standing over them the whole time. Or, really, any of the time.   

My husband and I now take turns with diapers, playtime, bath time and my all time favorite, getting up in the morning.  A friend of mine taught me to take turns getting up with the baby, especially on the weekends. This way both parents get to sleep in one day.  

Taking turns helps engage both parents in daily life, including meals, chores, bedtime, before school care. Plus, sharing responsibilities gives one parent a break and it lets your child(ren) have an equal amout of time with each parent. What's more, NO lopsided resentment can fester! Which, is a HUGE cause of co-parenting fights


  1. Be Patient

You both are new parents. Which, is scary AF. Neither one of you have done this before, so be patient with one another.  Raising a child is so far from easy, it’s scary! Neither one of you knows everything, nor the best way to do everything.  It is essential that a great team be patient with each other, and of course the ever changing needs of the baby.




6/16/17

This One Is For The Dads... Happy Father's Day (You're Welcome)





To the rad dad's (and mom's doing the work of two)  I wish you a very special day filled with love and blessings... and a few laughs of course! To get you started, here are a few Father's Day gems sure to make you smile. Because you of all people know... Dad-ing without a sense of humor is a shitty way to to survive parenting's little up, downs and fuckinghellareyoukiddingmerightnows...
Thanks for being a rad ass dad. We love you! 






























And finally... My favorite Father's Day Card...

6/15/17

The Ultimate Guide To A Perfect Father's Day

Remember my fabulous post, Attention Kids and Dads: 10 Things Mom REALLY  Wants For Mother's Day? Naturally, FTD thinks there should be a "10 Things DAD REALLY Wants For Father's Day" post. So, here it is, 10 Things DAD REALLY Wants For Father's Day... according to FTD.








Okay then...here we go again! Catalogues packed into the mail-box advertising drills, grills and garage skills!  YES - “Father’s day” is just around the corner.  The time when manhood is celebrated in all it’s glory. If you’ve popped out a kid or two (or three, or four or more - whatever) you’ve automatically been inducted into the club.  The day once a year where somehow you’ve become worthy of a gift or two, your favorite meal and the possibility of sucking down a relaxing six-pack of beer without being yelled at for not mowing the grass.

Ladies...I know you’re scrabbling about now trying to find the perfect gift that magically summarises how awesome your husband is, has-been and will ever be, BUT I’m gonna tell you what we REALLY want so pay attention!

Firstly! What we DON’T want:

No bloody Groupons for a relaxing massage in a quaint day spa that smells like mint.
NO generic 40 piece tool kits from K-mart
No five-packs of business socks
Absolutely no magazine subscriptions for fishing, golf or recreational boating.

Ok then? Done! That was easy wasn’t it?

Now...follow closely...here are the top ten things in timeline order that will guarantee a magnificent father's day for your lucky man.

  1. Let him sleep in past 6:30am - No cuddling, no TV blaring in the background, no kids bouncing on his head, no whispered reminders that the garbage bin has to go out.  Just peace and bloody quiet!

  2. A MASSIVE bacon n egg breakfast! No cherry tomatoes or sprigs of organic mediterranean parsley.  We want a POUND of crispy bacon, 5 eggs, cheese, a gob of mayonnaise, buttery toast and a shit-load of salt n pepper with a big mug of cheap coffee (just like the ‘ole days!)
  3. Allow him to evacuate the bowels in peace. Keep the kids from banging on the door, don’t be tempted to yell out that his clothes are on the floor next to the laundry bin, NO stomping around outside the toilet door huffing and puffing about the oil spots in the driveway! Give yer man some quality time to ‘snap out a bad-boy’ and finish that candy crush level that he’s been stuck on for 3 months.


  4. Don’t tell him what to wear to aunt Sally's brunch! Seriously, we don’t care in the slightest that blue and green don’t match. What does it matter that he wore the same shirt yesterday? And let the poor bugger wear sandals with socks!!! Geez!
  5. Fend off all calls from relatives (mother, mother-in-law, sisters) who want to ‘wish him a happy fathers day,’ but really want to gossip to YOU about their lazy husband and the oil spots in the driveway and clothes left on the floor near the laundry bin.
  6. Hand him the keys to the car and say “off you go honey”.  He may be slightly disorientated without a ‘request’ to pick up the dry-cleaning, milk or diapers, but the hint of freedom will be all he needs to race off to his store of choice for some quality man-shopping! Don’t discourage the poor bugger when he returns home with a couple of huge Walmart bags full of awesomeness.
  7. Stock the fridge with his favorite beer. AND for the love of God, PLEASE place it in a prominent place where he doesn’t have to rustle through bags of broccoli, quinoa and fruit salad in an oversized container (that, let's be honest here, no-one ever eats...or if they do venture inside the mystery bowl, they just eat the grapes).   
  8. Crack open a nice cold beer and hand it over WITHOUT the standard comment about carbohydrates. Sit him on the couch and load up the original Schwarzenegger version of ‘Conan the Barbarian’. Pump up the barely-used-since-the-kids-came-along 5.1 stereo and listen to him recite EVERY line with a thick Austrian accent.
  9. Have a massive family-friendly all-in juicy dirty barbecue with overcooked sausages, greasy burgers, couple of prawns, crappy potato salad, cheap-ass white buns with seeds, and don’t forget the riotous 80’s music! Leave the ketchup, mayo, macaroni salad and margarine on a table WITH THE LIDS OFF. Under NO circumstances should you even DARE try to sneak an “apricot marinated chicken fillet” or an assortment of fresh vegetables onto that grill!

  10. When the beer has run dry, and the night is winding down, don’t forget to give him a hefty slap on the arse and take a moment to remind yourself why you fell in love with him in the first place! And what ever you do, don't ruin the awesome man-day with nagging that the garbage bin STILL has to go out...there’s STILL oil in the driveway and his clothes aren’t going to pick themselves up.

Happy Fathers Day!










6/14/17

The Stay-At-Home Parent's Survival Guide





I'm on week two of ELEVEN weeks of summer vacation. My friend, of already asked myself, How in the hell am I going to survive? No. Bueno.

Being that this is my fourth summer home with an active wild-child, I do have a few tricks for surviving summer. First and foremost, if nothing else, I have to lower my expectations.

To, well, nothing. nada. zilch.

As in, making grand plans for an active summer filled with Mary-Poppins-style frolics in the park and picnics under the tree reading classics, is so far past redonkulous I should've had my head checked the first summer I believed I could pull it off. Not-to-mention, the two following.

If, like me, you're already asking yourself, How in the hell am I going to survive the summer with this wild-child at my feet, then keep reading, I've kind of figured it out.

1. Get over yourself.

The first rule of being a Stay-at-Home Parent (SAHP) is understanding that you CANNOT do it all. Seriously, let it go. I remember when my son started disappearing from the spot I left him in. That's when life changed. Once he started being mobile, my ENTIRE day was spent keeping him safe and contained. THINK: I was home all day and could not get ONE load of laundry finished.

Eventually, I learned I was not super-chick, so being a boss mom, wife, domestic diva and writer all on the same day is crazy hard, and should be avoided at all costs. I half-ass so much, I have to go back and do it again. So, rather than stress out about doing it all, I do what can, and I'm happy with that. While humans are pretty fu*king amazing, there are limits. 

2. Create a safe place

For parents of super littles (0-3yrs), Create a Safe Place.

Create a place in your home where you can leave your child for a few minutes and walk away.  When Oliver was a baby it was his crib, then eventually his pack-n-play in view of my, the TV or window. until he could crawl out.  (That’s right I let my kid watch TV before 2 years old. Judge me. I don’t care!)   Tip: No Pack-n-play? The highchair with a snack is a good spot.

I LOVE this photo.... it's a 10-month old Ollie!
At this age I never took my eyes off of him, so he hung out in the living room with me.
Again, this is a 10-15 minute fix. Not a babysitter! 



For the Big Kids (4+), I've found a task making up a task for him to do in his room is great for buying a few quiet minutes, or more! I will have him sort toys, or read a few books, give me a book report and earn a treat. Or color and try to stay inside the lines. Anything I can think of, I go with it.

The point of the 'safe place' is so YOU BOTH can have a time-out, whenever. The minute you are going to lose your shit, and it happens to the best of us when a child is attached 24/7, you both go to your respective safe place. We all need a break and the safe place makes it happen.

3. Play with your Child(ren), don’t just go through the motions.

One of the biggest issues with being a SAHP is getting things done. It's nearly impossible when you're answering four hundred, 'Why?' questions, cleaning up crumbs and spills and digging toys out of the dog's mouth.  I can get so caught up in my things, I forget there's this little guy looking for a playmate. And a good playmate, not a mommy preoccupied in thought, only sort of playing.

I've found if I mentally prepare myself for playing with my son, "for the next five-ten minutes", I can relax enough to play wholeheartedly and appreciate every minute. We both have way more fun, I get up feeling like a good mom, and my son is happy to resume his solo play. It makes SUCH a difference. 

4. Get out of the House! 

The minute I get cabin fever, I pack up Ollie and we go on an adventure. I have to. If I don’t break up the day, I go crazy. Sometimes, we walk to the park, or go to the zoo, or go on a bug, leaf and sick finding adventure in the backyard. It's great because it doesn't take much before he's off making up a new game or adventure. Or just go for a drive in the car. Break up the day when possible!

TIP: Look on websites like Plum District or Groupon for local deals on places for children.  I learn about children’s places I didn’t even know existed through those sites. You could also join a mommy’s group or baby and me Yoga or sign up for swimming lessons!

5.This Too Shall Pass

No doubt, it's a blessing to get to be home with your child, even if sometimes it feels like a punishment from the land of Karma. You'll never get these years back, so embrace them. When you think you are going to lose your mind, drop your bub in the safe place, take a few deep breaths, then go back and look at your beautiful child. Be thankful that you are there to share every milestone, first word, achievement and smile with him.  There are so many working moms and dads that would give anything to trade places with us SAHPS.

o when you are feeling overwhelmed and even annoyed with being a SAHM or SAHD, remember this too shall pass, and when it does you will miss it very very very much.




Have a tip for being a Stay At Home Parent?  Please share!


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6/11/17

Father's Day Gifts Dad Actually Wants

Are you desprate to get dad the perfect gift? Want to show up your siblings with the best friggin Father's Day Gift? Have a super awesome husband or boyfriend who deserves a super special gift?  Below are a few super-fun and thoughtful Father's Day gifts ANY dad will LOVE! 

**Today I am partnering DadGifts.Com with to bring you a few of my favorite Thoughtful Father's Day Gift ideas. All ideas and opinions are my own! 


1.  Father's Day Fill-in The Blank Printables

These are so much fun to do with kids young and old. The answers your child(ren) gice is PRICELESS! I laighed so hard two years ago when we did this the first time. THis year marks the third, and I can't wait to see what Ollie answers! Seriously,  DO THIS!






2. Father's Day photo collage

I LOVE this idea from, Positively Splendid. Something so simple and easy to make will be a life-long cherished conversation piece for home or work.






3. Skip the tie and grab a funky bowtie

I ran across Ethan, a 15 year-old entrepreneur and fashion designer, at a local street market. His handmade funky and fun bowties blew me away. Seriously, the kid is bringing the bowtie up about a thousand notches!  If dad needs a new bow tie, get him a handcrafted super-fun one, from a super cool kid, with an equally cool vision! Checkout, All Tied Up Bow Ties, on Facebook for more information.







4. Original Works Of Art



Nothing says cute, sweet and adorable like baby's tiny fingers and toes! Give this to new dads. SO CUTE! Plus, No Thoughtful Father's Day Gift Guide would be complete without a Star Wars Gift, Right? If doing a Daddy's day DIY project is speaking to you, check out my post full of fun and easy Father's Day DIY Projects Ideas.




5.  A Lock Pick Set. You may be like, WHAAAAAAT? A Lock Pick set? I get it, but, YES! A Lock Pick Set. I first learned the importance of a lock pick set when Ollie, at three years old, broke a key off in the front door lock. When the locksmith quoted a stupid amount to fix the stupid problem, the hubs ordered a lock pick set and got the key out himself. Since that day, the kit has come in handy to unlock the bathroom door, a bike lock, and recently, I broke a key off in the shed lock!

Call it a gag gift or an essential need, whatever, dad will seriously love it and have a good laugh too! We have the Lokko Lockpick Set from Lock Pick World. It's a 15-piece set of everything you need to fix a kid's faux-pas and then some! The Hubs was sold on it when he saw the clear training locks, "I've only heard of them, but never seen one in real life!" The hubs LOVES his lockpick set, and the times it's come in handy for various things is kind of crazy.  Check out our Lokko Lockpick Set, Here.

This set is absolutely suitable for learners of all levels, and comes complete with:
 
  • A full 15 piece lock pick set with lock picks, tension tools, and extractor
  • A Secret Agent / Spy Concealed Credit Card Pick Set
  • A fully-working, easy practice padlock with a see-through mechanism with keys
  • A double-sided, see-through practice training lock with keys
  • Our 43-page eBook with color photos for Single Pin Picking




What is your favorite thoughtful Father's Day Gift?

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6/7/17

The Bedtime Battle: The Struggle Is Real

I don't know about your house, but in mine, the bedtime struggle is real. It's an hour long battle of wits, stamina, and patience. The lengths I go to to get my child to sleep most nights are ridiculousness.  I know it. But, dammit! I need my child to go to sleep so I can have one friggin quiet minute a day, before passing out from exhaustion.

Below are the top ten things I do during the bedtime battle in an effort to get my child to go the fu*k to sleep!

1. I retrieve more things than a dog. The minute I get my son tucked in bed, he inevitably neeeeeeds something, or the world will end.  Most times, he needs multiple things like, water, Mr. Giraffe, Mr Penguin, Brownie the Horse, his red blanket, more water, daddy, another bedtime story... And like a dog, I fetch every single thing in hopes that he will keep his word and actually go to sleep.



2. I read the huge stack of books he's collected, most I've read so many times, I don't have to look at the words anymore. , "Only two books.", my kid must hear, "Bring me as many books as you can carry."  

3. I Survive my kid's gnarley, sleeper hold. After reading the books, I will lay with my son for a minute, then try to sneak out. This is the point where my son says, No, mommy, don't leave, When I get up to leave, my son takes the opportunity to put me in a choke hold hug and beg me to stay.

4. Play twenty (thousand) questions. I'm pretty sure my kid banks his questions throughout the day then pulls them all out at bedtime.


5. Make empty promises.  I will promise the moon and stars to get my son to go to sleep. Yep, I'm THAT mom.

6. Play Dead. After answering every question fathomable about farts, cars, and play doh, I play dead hoping boredom will induce sleep. Nine times out of ten, he pokes me in the eye to see if I'm really asleep, then starts asking more questions.

7. Ohmmmmm gonna lose my mind. While playing dead, waiting for the kid to loosen his death grip and fall asleep, I try to meditate. Think: Find my happy place.


8. Channel a Navy Seal. After breaking out of Alcatraz sneaking out of bed, in an effort not to poke the Dragon, I crawl out of his room like I'm on a covert operation.

9. Fall gracefully. It never fails the second I make it out of my kid's room, in the dark hallway I trip over the cat, kick a fire engine, step on a shoe and slip down the first stair trying to avoid a Hot Wheel.



10. Rinse Repeat. Multiple times. Every night.