Why It's The Kids That Suffer The Most When Parents Clash
June 29, 2015 April McCormick 0 Comments
Parents clash, that's just an unfortunate fact. I've dealt with clashes that involve parents going through a divorce trying to shove me in the middle of a "pick-me" war, or who have different lifestyle choices, or are just plain mean and nasty to be around.
Normally, I try to smile through the issues for the sake of our children getting to play together, but sometimes, that's just not possible.
I recently had an issue with another parent being just plain nasty to me. She clearly didn't like me and made it very apparent through the mean things she said and did to me. It almost felt like I was back in high school with a mean girl. Still, for the sake of Ollie being able to play with her son, I tried to ignore the white elephant in the room, her mean-girl attitude toward me.
I wish we could get along. My child adores her's. But it's just not going to happen. After a month of praying about the issue, talking with friends and trying to ignore her nasty comments, I finally came to the realization that I had to let it go. I have no choice but to move on. It makes me sad because nothing in this world makes me happier than seeing my son happy, but I have to stop letting this mom treat me like shit for the sake of a playdate.
Thankfully, letting go and moving on from this has made me feel 100% better. That being said, there are no winners in this. Our children are the ones suffering the most from this mom clash. It makes me sad that our boys won't play together anymore. What's more, I'm worried about how the boys will interpret the absence of the other.
It's a shame that problems between parents exist, but it's a fact that they happen. The sooner you let go, the sooner you and your child can find a playdate that's fun for both of you.
Have you dealt with this? How did you handle it?
There's No Doubt About It, This Is My Worst Parenting Fail. So Far...
June 26, 2015 April McCormick 0 Comments
And the worst part is the dumbest, most ridiculous bedtime move a parent can do, I do every single night; I lay down with my child until he falls asleep.
Every. Single. Night.
FAIL. FAIL. FAIL!!!
Every night, after we read books, I turn off the light and pretty much play dead for 20-45 minutes while my toddler does everything he can to drive me nuts.
|Credit: Photo is cover of Adam Mansbach's book, Go the F**k to Sleep .|
Then, once he knows I'm good and crazed, he passes out.
I've been doing this since we moved the kid out of his crib last year. Need I remind you of the many times I found myself trying to fit in a toddler bed? (Funny, back then I thought it couldn't get any worse. WRONG!)
NOTE: If you still have a crib sleeper then please learn from my mistakes. NEVER lay down with your toddler to help him fall asleep. All it takes is one night, and the next thing you know, hours of our life are wasted laying next to a singing, joking, laughing toddler on a mission to make you lose your freaking mind.
There's no doubt, my worst parenting fail so far is not teaching my child from infancy to fall asleep on his own.
It's just that I can't fully relax until the kid is asleep. So, I lay there until it happens.
I know how damn dumb it is that I play into this ridiculousness every night, yet, I still lay there like a spineless twit.
Well, not anymore!
I've finally lost the plot, and cannot continue to lay there anymore!
Last night, I began what I expect to be a lengthy battle, but one I am determined to win.
I am no longer laying in bed until my toddler falls asleep. The new routine will be:
1. Read books.
2. Have a cuddle for a couple of minutes.
3. Then get up and walk out.
I wish I could say all went smoothly last night, but it took a few times of laying down, walking out and chasing the kid back to bed until he finally gave up and passed out.
On the bright side, it took me the same amount of time to get him to fall asleep as it does just laying next to him. In a very strange way, I consider that a victory! What's more, in between me walking out of his room and him eventually getting out of bed, I got a few minutes to pick up, and begin my nighttime activities! Not to mention, it awesome spending the usual 30-minute bedtime battle not being poked and sung to!
I'd say the first battle point goes to me!
I know this is going to be a process, but I'm up for the challenge. I'm so damn sick of wasting an hour of my night playing into my toddler's bedtime bullshit. He's three years and four months old, I'd say that's big enough to fall asleep on his own!
Actually, I'd say he's about three years past learning how to fall asleep on his own. I was just never good at the cry-it-out method. Before now.
Now, I'm all like, "Cry! I don't care. It's still bedtime, tears or not. Go to sleep!"
Deep down, I know this is long overdue from a developmental stand point. My child needs to learn to fall asleep on his own, and not be scared to do it. He is three after all!
While, it's super hard to see my baby growing up so fast, it's time I take advantage of it. He's a big boy, and it's time he learned to sleep in his big boy bed by himself!
I've finally had a enough. Change Is Coming America.
Wish me luck...
WANTED: My Toddler's Mind And Listening Ears. He's Lost Both. Reward If Found.
June 24, 2015 April McCormick 0 Comments
I can't tell you how many times over the last near 6 weeks, I have thought about writing about how wonderful my toddler has become. The only thing that stopped me, was fear of jinxing myself. I did, however, tell a couple of girlfriends with toddlers the same age as Ollie, how wonderful and easy he had become. I even used the words easy and toddler in the same sentence!
Oh. How. Foolish. I. Was.
It turns out, that calm was just eye of the storm. Or maybe just a short rest before he geared up for round four hundred and twelve of terrorizing me. Whatever it was, the easy days are done. Gone.
Here are the days of shouting NO! and not listening to a word FTD or I say.
And then there's the throwing and smashing things and running from me. It's like he has reverted back to his early toddler days. The only difference is that I know beyond a shadow of a doubt he knows better. So now, IT'S WAR!
Yet, again, I'm finding myself in a full-on war of wits and patience with a damn toddler...
I COULD JUST SCREAM!
Yesterday, he jumped out of my car and bolted down the sidewalk. I told him to stop and come right back! He didn't even look back. By the time he was four houses down, I was afraid if I chased him he would run farther, so I did the next best thing; I threatened to throw his bike away.
Thankfully, that got his attention.
He turned right around, running towards me and begging me not to throw his bike away. When he made it back to me, I don't know what got into him, but the little butthead turned back around and took off AGAIN!
This time, I chased him. Of course, he thought it was funny as hell, and started running faster while laughing.
When I finally caught up to him, I scooped him up and stomped home, not saying a word. I was afraid they would all be really filthy, because those were the only words circling my head.
Once inside the house, I got down to his level, just like the damn parenting book said to do, and made eye contact while explaining why it was super naughty to run from me and even worse not to listen, and how he could have been hit by a car backing out of the driveway, followed by a bunch of other things I needed to say to feel better.
I'm pretty sure all he heard was, Blah, blah. blah. blaaaahhhhh blah blah blah.
It's like I talk in Charlie Brown speak to him!
The last week has been awful. I can't figure it out. What's happened to my generally sweet toddler? It's like his ears are clogged with crazy brain.
Being that I have already been through a version of this kind of crazy with him when he turned two, I know how to handle it. And, that it won't kill me. Even if it feels like it.
This toddler business can really suck sometimes, but one this in for sure, I have been to the battlefield before, and won and I will do it again. It's back to basics; consistency, time outs for both him and his favorite things, and hold on tight to my sanity until this toddler storm passes...
What Happens When An American, Australian and Toddler Walk Into A Store...
June 23, 2015 April McCormick 0 Comments
Every time we go as a family, I end up completely embarrassed, annoyed and/or sweaty from either chasing Ollie, or running from him and FTD. Yes, running in a grocery store. You would too if two psychotic children were chasing after you shouting ridiculousness... wearing a wolf mask!
We have to go up and down every freaking aisle and discuss and touch every single freaking product. I know more about the different Little Debbie snack cakes and cereal options than any one person should.
The minute we pull into the Kroger parking, FTD sees an employee pushing one of those kid carts with car on the front of the basket. Next thing I know, FTD has his seatbelt off and is hanging out the window yelling, “MATE! MATE! I’ll take that shopping trolley!”
Before the car is in park, FTD jumps out and grabs the damn cart from the guy.
Of course I am like, WHAT THE? FTD insists that "there is going to be a huge queue for these awesome trolleys," so he had to grab it before someone else did.
Mind you, before we left the house FTD promised this trip would be easy, fast and absolutely no funny business. I'm not sure which one of us is the bigger ass... Me for believing him, or him for lying.
FTD gets him out, and I take off... Unfortunately, pushing the straight-out-of-hell kid car cart.
Just as I look up they go zooming by. FTD yells out THERE’S MOMMY!! Ollie turns around and comes charging at me carrying two cars and a cookie. FTD straps Ollie back in and takes over driving.
Within 30 seconds Ollie wants out.
I’m back to driving the asshole cart from hell.
I am finally finished, when FTD brings me Ollie and says, “OK then, now I can go do some shopping for myself?”
Of course I kindly reply with, “WHAT THE HELL HAVE YOU BEEN DOING?”
I finally lose my shit.
I am finished shopping, Ollie wants out of the cart, and FTD is just screwing around. We have a “discussion” about what exactly he needs. Reluctantly, he agrees to throw in the towel, but not before we have to go get Pepsi Max and Candy- on opposite sides of the store.
I take Ollie from FTD, and hand over the car cart from hell for FTD to push. He starts carrying on about how hard it is to drive then starts bouncing it up and down like it’s on hydraulics. OMF! FTD!!!
Then, as if it cannot get any worse, FTD’s favorite song starts playing through the store, and then my worst nightmare happens, I hear FTD sing out, “Blinded by the LICE! Wrapped up like a DUCHE you know the middle of the NIGHT.” (He knows the right words, he just refuses to sing them.)
I nearly bit my tongue off trying not to laugh. It's like I have two toddlers.
FTD Looked back at Ollie, smiled and winked... letting him know it most definitely would NOT be the last time...
10 Amazing Anti-Aging Tips That Won't Break The Bank
June 23, 2015 April McCormick 0 Comments
Thankfully, after a glass of wine and a phone call to a bestie about how old and ugly I was, I ended the pity party, and faced the true cold reality of thirty-seven; if I don't change my diet and beauty regimen, I'm going to look like a California Raisin by forty. Which, IS NOT AN OPTION!
So, I turned to Dr. Google for advice. I Googled ways to 'look youthful without surgery', 'Ways to reverse aging', 'How to stay young forever' and every other way I could think of to say, Help, I don't want to look like I'm 80 when I'm 40!
What in the world did we do before Google?!
First and foremost, one of the most amazing and inspirational things I found was a photo of a 75 year old woman. An absolutely stunning and fit, seventy-five year old woman, Ernestine Shepherd, the World Record holder for 'Oldest Female Body Builder'.
There's no other way about it, she is amazing, inspirational and absolutely gorgeous. Ernestine is a body builder and active personal trainer, and should be the poster child for, "What's Your Excuse?"
Sorry, I digress, but I just had to share the fuel that propelled me on my quest for eternal youth. Without further ado, 10 Amazing Anti-Aging Tips That Won't Break The Bank:
1. Stay hydrated. Every single site and famous person's, "beauty secret", says drink copious amounts of water, avoid excessive alcohol consumption and limit caffeine.
Every expert agrees, the cheapest, fastest and most effective 'fountain of youth' is water. According to Atlanta Dermatologist, Kenneth Ellner, MD, "Dehydration makes your skin look more dry and wrinkled, which can be improved with proper hydration." If you want to keep your skin healthy and glowing, drink water. Lots of it.
Tip: Buy a super cute water bottle that you love, and keep it with you at all times.
2. It's all in the "Essence". Essences work like a toner, but without alcohol, so instead of cleansing or stripping the skin with alcohol, it hydrates with a humectant. Joshua Zeichner, the director of cosmetic and clinical research at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York City, says, "Essences soften dead skin cells on the stratum corneum, so anything you put on top penetrates the skin more effectively."
3. Serums are saviors. Did you know: By 30, many people have pigmentation under the skin that's not yet visible to the naked eye? According to Zoe Draelos, a consulting professor of dermatology at Duke University, it's true. But good news, he says, "Treating spots before you see them can keep them from surfacing."
Using a serum or cream with brightening ingredients, like vitamin C or soy, each morning can make your skin radiant in about one month! Expert tip: If your skin is sensitive, try a formula with niacin amide instead, which calms redness while brightening.
4. Pump up the Peptides. Peptides, one of dermatologists' favorite anti-aging ingredients, signal skin cells to produce more collagen. A.k.a the stuff that makes your skin firmer, smoother, dewy, and all-around younger-looking.
Tip: If you have under eye circles, then peptides are going to be your secret weapon, they can make under eye circles less noticeable by thickening collagen!
5. Draw out the dirt. Pampering yourself with a weekly face mask creates instant results. In the summer I have oily acne-prone skin. To draw out the dirt and oils, I always turn to a clay mask to draw out stubborn blackheads and leave pores clean and teeny tiny! Right now, I'm obsessed with Citrus Clear Clay Pore and Blackhead Extracting Mask.
5. Moisturize. Fun Fact: Your moisturizer works as a physical barrier to 'lock' in moisture. Not putting on moisturizer is like sending your skin into a battle without weapons. NO BUENO!
6. Slather on sunscreen. Fun Fact: Ninety percent of fine lines are caused by sun exposure, which makes sunscreen the ultimate anti-ager.
Doris Day, a dermatologist in New York City, says slather on sunscree to "keep skin better hydrated, since UV rays also damage ceramides."
Ceramics: good fats in the skin that prevent dryness
Personal Tip: I use a tinted moisturizer with sunscreen. Meaning, I slather on moisturizer, sunscreen, and makeup in one easy step! I definitely recommend that. I like a little extra coverage, so I LOVE Tinted Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 20
7. Peel the years away. Buffered glycolic acid and retinol rapidly improve the look and texture of skin by removing buildup of dry skin, smoothing out fine lines, improving discoloration and also helping to trigger collagen production.
(1) removing dead skin cells
(2) stimulating production in new, fresh skin cells.
Contains gentle exfoliating ingredients to remove oil, dirt, and impurities. Contains glycolic acid which exfoliates dead skin cells and keeps pores from clogging. Lemon oil helps improve and brighten complexion. Buy it now, here. (for $5 off Use code "tan4814")
"Your body needs down time to repair cells and rest your heart. And your mind needs dreaming to stay sane." There's no doubt, when I don't get enough sleep I look extra old and tired.
What I Want The World To Know About Toddlers
June 22, 2015 April McCormick 0 Comments
I owe a HUGE apology to every parent I judged.
Plain and simple, Toddlers are nuts. Toddlers need to explore, and talk, and test boundaries. Yes, they are sweet, and wonderful, and full of smiles and laughter too, but they will scream and cry and throw tantrums the second you try to keep them from doing something they are determined to do.
Of course, with tough love, consistency and perseverance, toddlers calm down and stop with the petty tantrums, but it's a process, not an overnight thing.
Toddlers can be loud, stubborn, out of control, and vocal at times. So Can Adults.
Toddlers will throw a huge fit when stopped from or kept from doing something they want. So do adults.
I pick my battles and do my best.
I want to stop feeling so embarrassed by my son's behavior. I can't be so hard on myself anymore! There is only so much I can do. Yes, I can stop him from running around, but if I do, then he is going to cry, and at this stage, I cannot stop him from both.
No. I am the best mom I can be.
I trust my instincts, put my foot down, and try to "control" my son as best as possible. Parenting is a delicate balance, and worrying what other people think throws that balance right off.
Babies and toddlers are sweet and wonderful, but at the same time, they are trying to figure out this big world, and sometimes that will include running, screaming, crying, laughing, smashing things and meltdowns-sometimes all within 30-seconds.
To the people shaking their head in the grocery store at the parent with the crying kid, or annoyed that a family is sitting next to you in a restaurant with a young child, or rolling your eyes at the mother in the mall for letting her kid cry or run around... Get over yourself. Trust me, you did it too. Call your mom.
HAPPY FATHER'S DAY! Here's Something To Make You Smile, Dad. #FathersDay
June 21, 2015 April McCormick 0 Comments
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