I’ve Got Dirty Dishes in My Sink Too |The Bourbon Soaked Mom|

At work a few weeks ago I was on my lunch break writing down a list of all the things that needed to be taken care of at home. I ticked off your basic things such as laundry, dishes, mop the floors and clean out the fridge. Next I logged onto my email to compile a list of homework that needed to be completed before the end of the week. After I had written down all the necessary due dates in my planner, I thought about what time I needed to pick my kids up, what activities they had planned, if my eldest had completed his homework and wondered whether or not my youngest needed diapers and wipes taken to his daycare.My brain felt like it was going to explode. It was enough to make me want to absolutely curl up in a ball and die.

I lay awake at night and silently wonder to myself if I have gotten everything done that day that I could possibly get finished. Sometimes I sit straight up in bed with anxiety when I remember something that I’ve forgotten, or remember something that needs special attention.

A few months ago all of my worry and anxiety came to a head. While at my job, sitting and eating my lunch and thinking of all of the things I needed to get accomplished that week, I had a complete freak out moment. I collapsed. The stress got the best of me. My anxiety turned into panic and the panic overtook me in a wave so strong that it caused me to pass out completely. After being hospitalized for three days and undergoing a thousand tests, enough was enough. I had had it. No more.

I just want to say, for others out there like me, IT’S OKAY. Calm down. Breathe. We’re all just trying to make it.

The term “not enough hours in the day” is one that comes to mind when I think of my schedule. A 40 hour work week, raising two small children, keeping house, finishing up my bachelors degree (after three years as a SAHM) fitting in time to be a good wife, and managing time for myself is a major feat for me. Some weeks are better than others, while some weeks can be counted as complete nightmares. Most times I feel like I am failing more than I am accomplishing anything, but there is hope.

Let me tell you this. I’ve got dirty dishes in my sink too. I’ve went weeks without mopping my floors. I’ve got a laundry room that would both horrify you and send you into fits of laughter. You know why? Because sometimes I feel it’s okay to neglect your chores to just hang out with your kids. The time with my children while they are still children is very limited. I would rather them remember life with me as being a loving, and present environment than one where I’m always stressed about the house, or work.

I get that we are constantly reminded of the pressure to be perfect. We are constantly told that our homes should look like something out of Southern Living, that our children shouldn’t watch television and that if they aren’t writing novels by aged 7 we are failing as parents. Everywhere you turn it seems like someone is force feeding us a different set of expectations for Moms everywhere. It’s easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of having the perfect life, especially when the constant comparison is there.

 

I promise you, behind every beautiful Instagram photo is a meticulously carved image of untrue perfection. I promise you that even women who have the most beautiful and perfect outside image have chaos going on at home. I promise you that most Moms are tired, out of breath, caffeinated crazy women who want nothing more than a bath alone and time to watch what they want on television after a long day of pleasing everyone else.

To all the women like me who are battling a constant mound of dirty dishes, who get annoyed with all the toys laying around the house and who have dug dirty clothes out of the laundry and sprayed them with fabric freshener, this one’s for you. It’s fine that you haven’t read your children a bedtime story in a few days, they will live. It’s okay that your rug has cookie crumbs on it, or that you have sticky hardwood floors. It’s okay that you push that homework until the night before and then panic. WE are all doing fine. WE are all getting it done on our own terms. WE CAN DO IT. WE WILL DO IT.

Because we are Mothers and that’s what we do.

So if you’re not mod-podging your child’s pictures on to wooden blocks, or hand making their own hypoallergenic soap, don’t feel bad. Most of us aren’t either. Remember, most of us still have last night’s dirty dishes in the sink. A small price to pay for happy children.

10 Pieces of Truth I Want my Sons to Know |The Bourbon Soaked Mom|

Everyone tells me that boys are easy.

“Oh, you’ve got two boys. They are so much easier than having girls. No drama.”

Really? Because where I am sitting, boys have a lot on their shoulders. One day my sons are going to (if they so choose) be the head of a family, provide for their wives and children, enter the professional world and become successful fathers, husbands and providers.

That’s kind of a lot of pressure on myself and my husband to raise them to be decent, good, loving human beings. Let’s face it. I’ve met some not so great boys and even worse men along the way. I look at those examples as everything I want my boys NOT to be.

In the spirit of looking to the future, (my boys have birthdays coming up) I thought of some of the little things I want my boys to know as they get older. Thinking of them growing up is hard, but with a little bit of humor, and truth, this piece has been fun to write on a snowy Sunday morning.

1: Being the “good guy” is always better than being the “bad boy.” 

I’m not sure who made this a thing, but being a bad boy who gets the girl in popular culture is something I’m over. I get it, Danny was adorable in his leather T-Birds jacket and bad attitude, but now bad boy means something different.

“Girls love bad boys”. Eye roll. It’s 10-1 better to be someone in a position to get good grades, who people respect, and who is a compassionate, caring and worthy of someone’s time.

Please, for the love of God, don’t get swept up in this macho crap. When you’re four misdemeanors in, and your Daddy can’t get you out of MCR because you’re too far gone and the Judge throws the book at you, we’ll see how much you wanna be “the bad boy”. I will let you sit in jail and think of how stupid you were, trust me.

I’m telling you boys, I will bust your ass if you turn out like this.

2: That girl you’ll fall for in high-school will not be your soul mate. 

This girl, she’ll be beautiful and perfect and probably a wonderful girl. I’ll love her and welcome her into our family. She’ll be around for a while, maybe four years even. She isn’t your soul mate. I promise, there’s life beyond high school. She will find it and so will you. Please, don’t go thinking you’ve found the one when you’re 17. Don’t neglect your friends, or not go on senior trip because so-and-so isn’t going. Don’t only do things with her, and get so caught up in being someone’s boyfriend that you miss high-school, those years are so fun and you can’t get them back.

Now, if by some chance you prove me wrong and end up marrying this gal, I’ll be the happiest person on planet earth. IF….she meets my standards as a person, future wife and future mother of my Grandchildren. And that’s a very strong IF.

3: When in doubt, ALWAYS open the car door.

Ya’ll are little right now, but I am going to make sure you know the importance of being gentlemen. It’s a lost art that is really only intact here in the South because of Moms like me who stress it’s ever loving importance. You should always treat ladies with nothing less than the respect you treat me, your Mother. I don’t care how much you dislike someone, if she’s a lady you better be respectful, gracious and mindful of your manners. This means opening doors for old biddies, saying Yes Ma’m to the horrible teacher you can’t stand, and helping carry groceries out of Food City for anyone who is pregnant, has a thousand kids, or just needs your general manly help. Remember this.

4: Sports are fun, but I doubt you’re ever going pro. Sorry, honey. 

Sports are fun, but they are for recreational purposes only. I will always let my children play whatever they want to play, and never force them if they don’t want to. What I disagree with is being a stage Mom who believes ya’ll are gonna be D1 prospects by the time you graduate high-school. I know those chances are slim, and while I would love for that to happen for you guys and you all to make millions tossing around some sort of ball, it’s unrealistic. You will play for fun and fun only. No crazy soccer Mom stuff from me, I promise.

5: I don’t expect you all to be lawyers like your Dad. BUT, you’ll get some type of an education if I have to drag you every step of the way. 

Do I expect ya’ll to suffer through law school like your Dad? No. But I’ll say this, it’s very hard to make it in the world unless you have an education. There are plenty of options if “school just isn’t for you.” You will have some sort of education or educational training before I turn you loose in the world.

6: I know you’re going to try to sneak out, try alcohol, and run wild. You can’t outsmart me. I’ve done it all. 

Please. I’ve already scoped out which windows are accessible from ground level, and what doors open silently without so much as a creak. I know your sneaky tricks, trust me, because I was a sneaky trickster once myself. SPOILER ALERT: You can’t get anything over on me. You can’t fool me. You can’t come home with a mouth full of vodka and try to hide it. I WILL CATCH YOU. If you try to sneak out of my house, I will find you and embarrass you.

Like my Dad always told me,

“You can’t outs*** a bullsh*****.”

7: There will be a lot of times that you won’t particularly like your Dad and myself. I understand it. 

There will a lot times when you slam your door and curse my name. I promise you, everything I do is for your own good. I promise, you’ll get it one day when you have kids of your own and all you want to do is keep them in a glass bubble. When I tell you no to going somewhere, it’s because I know what you’ll do once you’re there. If I tell you that those friends you like so much are no good, it’s because they aren’t. Only a Mom has your best interests at heart.

8: The world is a big place, go explore. 

I want nothing more for you guys than to go out and explore. See the world. Do all the things I never did, see everything I never have. I would love for you to see life beyond this small town. Travel, see different countries, taste different foods, experience different cultures. Figure out what you want out of the world and go get it. Life is too short not to.

9: Never settle for anything, baby. 

Never settle for anything. Never. Never settle for crappy friends. A crappy life. A crappy job. Make your life yours, under your own terms and be sure that everything you have is what you want. Don’t stop until you’re completely happy.

10: Wherever life takes you, remember one thing. I love you and you can always come home. 

If you hit some bumps along the way, know that your rooms are still here and you can always come home, regroup and recharge. Complete with a home cooked meal and plenty of Dad jokes from your Father.


 

Maybe I’ll give this piece to the boys when they’re old enough to read. As it is, I’m writing about them like they are already grown up and about to leave me. (They are 2 and 4) It seems like I’ll blink my eyes and that time will be here.

I always want them to remember the importance of little things, because those little things are actually big things.

I hope they never lose sight of who they are, where they come from, and the importance of being kind, honest and genuine people who are just trying to make their way in the world.

We’ll file this one in the archives under “read later” and hope until then that these boys don’t kill me.

 

National Breastfeeding Month & Adventures in Breastfeeding. By Jarron Clemons|The Bourbon Soaked Mom|

In honor of National Breastfeeding month, I wanted to reach out to someone who truly has experience and education in the area of breastfeeding. I see so many young Moms reaching out to one another on social media, or support sights to share their knowledge about breastfeeding and encourage and help one another, I saw these photos of my friend, and local lactivist and breastfeeding guru, Jarron Clemons, and I found them to be both beautiful and empowering. 

There is nothing more natural than a Mother feeding her own child, and even though some put a stigma on breastfeeding, I think it is a beautiful and rewarding thing. Even though I chose not to breastfeed my children (not for lack of trying) I wanted to highlight how special the journey of breastfeeding is for the Mothers who undergo the task, and make a success of it.

It’s easy to look at beautiful images like the ones I’ve posted and forget about all the knowledge, education, hard work, pain and love these women go through to feed their children every single day. It’s easy to forget how tired they are, how much they sacrifice and how much it means to them to be able to give their child a breastfeeding experience.

I wanted to honor those Moms by having someone who knows and understands the journey, and has lived it herself for the last several years. Now, I hand over the reigns to my dear friend, who is an inspiration and help to so many of our local Moms, whether it be advice, a helping hand or simply a few words of encouragement.


 

 

Someone once told me that when you have children, the days are long but the years are short. When my first daughter was born I kept telling myself to take it day by day. As many people as I talked with and as much material as I read, I still wasn’t prepared for what was to come. For about the first month, all the baby did was nurse. Seriously, ALL. Day. Long. I can remember thinking that I wasn’t going to meet my breastfeeding goal of one year because I couldn’t do anything without this kid attached to my boob.

My fiancé had never experienced breastfeeding relationships. I affectionately say the plural of relationships because I now know the importance of the people around the mother and child to support them. He was uncomfortable with me nursing in public and the baby hated a cover over her head while trying to eat. The anxiety and tears started taking a toll on me but reading about all the benefits lead me to stick with it.
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courtesy of Natasha Raichel Photography

Like reading a good book I couldn’t put down, I was excited to learn everything about breastfeeding and hear about other journeys. In the beginning of posting breastfeeding information on social media, it was for me to be able to go back and read later when I had time but the posts started attracting attention. I had pregnant mothers ask me where they should begin, seasoned mothers who previously formula fed but now want to nurse, and moms with breastfeeding problems all asking for my help. Somewhere along the way of helping these women and constantly educating those around me by the discussion of the world of breasts in which I now inevitably lived, my fiancé crossed over.

There have been agonizing times of breastfeeding where I didn’t think I could go on another day. When my first daughter was almost 6 months old I began having flu like symptoms, tremendous pain from within my breasts and cracked, bleeding nipples. I knew I had an infection called mastitis and needed medical attention but had no primary care physician. After hours of waiting to see an actual MD who was frighteningly clueless about breastfeeding, a nurse practitioner at another facility prescribed me the correct antibiotics. Our breastfeeding relationship lasted one month after her second birthday.

My second breastfeeding adventure is still in full force with my 9 month of daughter. Our agonizing days were in the beginning with her mild lip tie and tongue tie. I knew something wasn’t right with her latch because it became uncomfortable for me and Breastfeeding should not hurt. Every time she latched on to my nipple I imagined the tip had been clipped off and then sandpaper had been rubbed over the edges of the open wound. Excruciating would have been an understatement to describe the pain. Without the help of a nipple shield I don’t know that I could have continued. After seeing her pediatrician, a dentist, and two specialists because of conflicting beliefs on weather or not to clip one or both ties, we saw a lactation consultant who finally fixed our latch. I had my mind made up that we were going to solve the problem and continue breastfeeding no matter what I had to do.
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Breastfeeding is the natural biological norm but there are many more benefits to it. In respect to society and the environment, some examples of how breastfeeding helps us all are; being a naturally renewable source that doesn’t put off any waste or pollution with no need for packaging, a natural form of birth control, it can reduce the cost of healthcare from insurance companies, create a healthier child who doesn’t need as much medical attention therefore not using government health benefits compared statistically to non breastfed babies (even as the child grows into an adult), breastmilk is free and thus saving the parents and or the government anywhere from $800-$1200 on artificial milk, and there is a reduction in taxes for children who are breastfed. There are also other benefits to the mother and baby besides the frequently discussed nutritional values. Breastfeeding has been linked to lower the risk of breast cancer, ovarian cancer and endometrial cancers, it reduces the risk of anemia, it causes the uterus to contract and aids in control of bleeding after birth, breastfeeding can burn up to 500 calories a day and therefore get a woman’s pre pregnancy body back more quickly, the act of breastfeeding also releases feel good hormones which also lower a woman’s risk of postpartum depression, and breastfeeding promotes a special bond between the mother and baby.
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Nursing has been quite the experience. My world revolved around it for 2 years and it threw me in to what I now know is the attachment parenting method. I usually leave my youngest daughter on two hour time frames or just take her with me wherever I go. We don’t take trips without our kids but look forward to the days when we can. My most difficult yet rewarding adventure in life has been raising my children. Breastfeeding will only be one small chapter while our family’s story continues on but it will always be significant to the foundation of which my children got their start in life.
 All photographs published with permission from Jarron Clemons.
Featured image courtesy of B&K Photography.

6 Quick Tips for Keeping Your Sanity as a MOM |The Bourbon Soaked Mom|

I’m not too proud to admit that lately, I’ve been in a serious funk. My kids have been going wild with the recent lunar pull, my house has gotten into a seriously messy state, and my laundry room has accumulated so many dirty clothes and linens that I didn’t think I was ever going to get it cleared away. I found myself overwhelmed, feeling guilty and completely out of control over myself, my household and my kids. The three things that are my job to take care of. Not only was it depressing, but I also completely let myself down.

After doing some research, I realized that it isn’t uncommon for Mothers to feel like this. Both stay at home Moms, and working mothers, and even mothers who are still in school. It’s incredibly hard to run your household, and keep with all the busy things you try to do for your kids. I never realized how much everything was slipping away from me until it was already out of control. So, I took to other MOMMY blogs and Pinterest, of course, to see if there were any certain steps I could take to cut down on the stress, up the organization and make my life, and my stress level a little easier.

1: Always make the beds when you first get up. 

This way it starts the day on a productive note and you’re not tempting to (or your children) to crawl back into it later in the day. Making your bed just feels nicer, doesn’t it? It may be a chore, but if you do it, it truly sets the tone for your day.

2: Wipe down your kitchen counters and swiffer the floor before bedtime. 

This one is a hard one for me, because my kitchen is a real problem area. My kids love to sling food everywhere, my dog has a thing for peeing on my rugs, and let’s face it, husbands aren’t much better. I have found that giving the counters a quick rub down with a Clorox wipe and taking my Shark to the floor works wonders. Especially after supper when things are their messiest.

3: Get some exercise at least once every day.

I have to MAKE myself do this. I usually just try to take the kids for a walk/stroll down my neighborhood or take them to the park. It’s honestly hard to fit it in, but important. Exercise fights stress, and it just good for your overall health. I always feel better after a morning run or walk.

4: Choose at least ONE activity to do with your kids daily. 

Whether it’s making a craft, coloring a coloring page, or reading them books, it’s important to just be in the present and do something with them. I try to plan fun things for my kids every single day. We will go for a bike ride, walk downtown, or go exploring in a new town we don’t know. They always love the excitement, even if it’s just getting in the car and driving down the road. It’s good to make them feel special. They aren’t little long.

5: Give yourself certain chores everyday so that you’re not overwhelmed. 

I went on Pinterest and printed myself out a list of chores to do on certain days. This way, it breaks them down into categories and puts all your focus on a few things a day, instead of just trying to get everything done in one sitting. Much easier and much more realistic.

6: Make sure to give yourself ME TIME. 

Even if it’s only taking a bath by yourself, that time is really important and trust me, I am sure you’ve earned it. Being a Mom is challenging, and every now and then, it’s nice to just relax and be alone!

It’s been around two months, and I am slowly getting myself back to normal. My stress level has decreased, I am slowly getting organized, and my children (and myself) are much happier. That’s what it’s all about, even if you lost a fraction of sanity along the way.

The “Unmentionables” of Motherhood |The Bourbon Soaked Mom|

I’ve been a stay at home Mother to two sons for going on four years now. While it’s the most important job I have ever had, or will ever have, it’s also the hardest and most challenging, both mentally, physically and emotionally.

I have found that to get through it, it’s best to indulge in a little humor and laugh at the mess, and enjoy the chaos that is raising children….

That being said, there is an unspoken plethora of things, bribes, actions and tactics that Moms cling to, in the hopes of having a dignified and civilized household. These “unmentionables” are the last resort of desperate women to regain control over the tiny dictators who now own them, body and soul.

Trust me, it gets real.

SPOILER ALERT: This article is meant to be light-hearted and humorous, so if you can’t take a joke, go ahead and exit on out of this one.

1: There really is a 5 Second Rule

You spent all evening preparing that lovely meal for your beautiful family, and right when you are FINALLY sitting down to eat, your toddler plunges his plate from the high chair to floor. The hours you just spent Clorox-ing your kitchen tile just went up in smoke, and unless it’s something UN-salvageable, I’m going to scrape it up, blow it off and say “5 second rule” or “god made dirt”! Eat up.

2: Bribing with Candy, Gifts or Television is essential.

With the promise of a celebratory gulp of Mountain Dew, or a piece of reward candy, my toddler will fold clothes, clean up his room, be nice to his brother and help me do dishes. I know there are child labor laws, but I just call this smart, and advantageous parenting.

3: Washing yourself in any form (bath or shower) takes complete planning and mastery.

There are a few approaches to taking a bath or shower alone. You can plan your bath around nap-time. (I would not recommend.) You could get up extra early and do it before they awake. (Too much trouble, and did I mention how tired I constantly am?) Or you could do the real zinger and load up the bathroom with toys and lock the door and make them sit there and scream whilst you attempt to efficiently shampoo your hair.

4: See #3, only replace “washing yourself” with “using the bathroom”.

Seriously, tell me the last time you peed in peace….

5: Baby wipes are your go to form of cleaning….anything.

There is a reason why I keep a pack of baby wipes in every room, and even in my car. Kids are gross, or at least mine are. They spill stuff, they puke a lot, and if they are like my 15 month old, they are privy to pulling off their diaper and taking a big poop right in the middle of the living floor. You need baby wipes. Trust me. They are a necessity.

 6: Most of your clothing has poop or puke on it, and it’s not yours.

I really do mean literal shit. And vomit. Snot. Any bodily fluid you can think of will eventually end up on your clothing. My stuff is stained, (nobody tells you that Enfamil AR will stain like the cheapest nastiest wine) and my prized pieces have been washed so many times they are falling apart.

7: No smell or gastrointestinal issue on the planet can disturb you now.

Nothing says I love you like plunging your thumb in a poopy diaper and not even so much as mustering a gag. Yep, you’ve seen and, more than likely, cleaned your fair share of goop and grime, but it’s okay, you do so with a stomach ( and gag reflex) of steel.

 8: Screaming children are the background music of your life.

You don’t even need earplugs anymore, it’s just a normal part of everyday life. Kids screaming, running amok and wreaking havoc on your entire world. And you love them so much you put up with it.

 9: The only true means of fully asserting your force is meaningfully pronouncing a toddler’s first, middle and last name.

The only way my kids ever take me serious is when I say their first, middle and last names in such a way that it strikes absolute fear in their tiny beating hearts and causes them to stop whatever shenanigans they are planning. It’s called a bluff and thank god they are still young enough to think I am serious enough to discipline them heavily, or else I would be up sh**creek.

10: You are used to the unabashed and brutal truth.

They say that no one tells the truth except drunk people, and toddlers. Well, that’s about spot on. Kids do not care to tell you if you’re fat, if your clothes are ugly and if you’re being stupid. Seriously, my toddler has told me “Mommy, you’re being dumb.” Not to mention the time he got me in a Boutique dressing room and berated me with a brutally honest commentary of my backside.

So go ahead moms, jump on the band wagon and admit motherhood has plunged your etiquette and standards through your own cultural floorboards. If you happen to be reading this with someone over your shoulder, you have my permission to scoff, turn your nose up, and deny, deny, deny. However, the next time you swivel your head around to look for witnesses, before you toss that organic cookie back on your kid’s tray (that was just on the ground), remember these words and just let the feeling of hypocrisy sink on in.

Featured Image courtesy of Pinterest

 

10 Things to Thank Your Mother for this Mother’s Day |The Bourbon Soaked Mom |

Where would we be without our Mothers? Myself, I’m not sure. I still can’t make any major life decisions without calling my Mom and asking her advice. I can’t really even go a single day without talking to her, or seeing her. My Mom has and will always be my mentor, my rock, my inspirations and my favorite person. She’s loved me during times when I was certainly unlovable, and prayed for me during circumstances that were less than stellar. She’s never given up on me, even when it was probably easier to just throw in the towel. A Mother’s unconditional love is something invaluable, and without it, I know I wouldn’t be the person I am today. Thanks Mom, for always loving me selflessly, even when I didn’t deserve it. With Mother’s Day coming up, here are 10 things we should all thank our Mother’s for.

1: Thanks for Believing in Me.

Thanks for always being my number 1 fan. No matter if it’s sports, school or random hobbies, you’ve always been my biggest supporter. When you believe I can do it, I believe I can do it.

2: Thanks for Putting up with Me.

Thanks for all the patience, empathy and forgiveness that come with being a Mother. I know that there were many times when you probably felt like I was a lost cause, but thank god you didn’t throw in the towel.

3: Thanks for Never giving up on me.

Thanks for always being kind, understanding, and loving in situations that seemed hopeless and times that were trivial. It’s hard to imagine ever going through those times alone, and with you, I didn’t have to.

4: Thanks for giving me wings.

Thanks for giving me the tools, freedom and confidence to make my own way in this world. I owe it all to your guidance, support and encouragement.

5: Thanks for letting me make my own mistakes.

Thanks for all the tough love, and allowing me to experience life through my own eyes, instead of trying to keep me sheltered from the world. Even though you always knew best, you also understand that some things are just better learned the hard way. I’m grateful for that.

6: Thanks for Always being there.

Rain, sleet, snow, stormy weather and dark of night. I know you’ll always be there for me no matter what. I can’t thank you enough for the times you’ve taken care of me while sick, babysat my children, taken off work early to help me in times of crisis, and canceled your plans to come hang out with me. Sometimes the best remedy for anything is just being with you, Mom.

7: Thanks Being a Role Model.

Thank you for being the kind of woman that I can strive to mold myself after the rest of my life. The kind of woman I hope my sons grow up and marry. You’ve instilled in me qualities that can’t be learned through school, or any type of formal education. Perseverance, strength, manners, kindness,….the list goes on.

8: Thanks for Loving my Children like they’re your children.

Thank you for loving your grandchildren like your own. Nothing makes me as happy as seeing them being spoiled by their Grandma.

9: Thanks for All the Lessons.

Thanks for always teaching me to trust my gut, do what’s right, help others when they need helping, and always take pleasure in the little things. Thanks for teaching me the importance of family, friendships, God, and love. I’ll carry them with me the rest of my days.

10: Thanks for an Amazing Life.

Thanks for always putting me first, even when it wasn’t easy. Thanks for the great life you’ve given me, and all the sacrifices you’ve made to ensure that I have been happy, healthy and thriving in this world. From Mother to Mother, I now understand how difficult those things can be, and how important they truly are.

 

Thanks Mom, for just being my Mom, and for being all the things to me that I hope one day I am to my children. God broke the mold when he made you. We Love You.

 

10 Hilarious Lessons Learned from Living with ALL-BOYS.

Everyone that knows me, knows that my home is pretty much the equivalent of a mini-frat house. Any given day there is crap everywhere, place is always a mess, and it ALWAYS looks like I’ve thrown a rager the night before. In reality it’s just the work of my husband, my toddler and my three-nager. Sometimes I just cry at the sheer unfairness of living life with all males, with my only female consolation prize being my Yorkie, Penny-Lane. Then I realize, how boring would my life be if I didn’t live in complete fear for my life and belongings every single day. Honestly, when I lay down in bed at night I just whisper a prayer of thanks that my house wasn’t burned the the ground that day. Raising boys has been an adventure, and it’s always been so fun. I joke around about it a lot, but I absolutely do love it. I love my children, and of course my husband, who have taught me so much these last four years. I wouldn’t trade them for all the cleanliness, order, peace and quiet in the entire world. Here are some hilarious, and very hard-learned lessons my boys have taught me over the years. I hope that this gives you a laugh and lightens the load today. (Especially since we are all still mourning our lost UK season and the dead dreams of 40-0. My heart is laying back in Indy, trampled and in a million pieces if anyone wants to find it for me and just throw it in the garbage.)

 

1: You get really good at cleaning up messes.

As I type this article, I have sandwich remnants and cut up hot dogs laying everywhere. I’m really quick and efficient at cleaning up god-awful messes. Poop int he crib? Got that under control. Baby vom on the couch? Rookie stuff. I tell everyone I got a dog for the boys, but really I just got her to eat all the extra food that gets thrown everywhere. AM I kidding…not really.

2: They give you a really thick skin.

You think that dress looks great on you? You actually look pretty fat. You think your makeup is on point today? That lipstick is too red and you look funny. Always count on your kids to tell you the honest and brutal truth, especially boys. They just have no filter. It’s not their fault, they are hardwired that way. My husband doesn’t exactly help matters, either.

3: You learn not to care so much about clothes.

Your clothes, or their clothes, because either way, both will get ruined. Most of my stuff is snot stained, food stained, or gobbed up with unknown substances that even spray and wash won’t bring out. It’s okay, that’s why I buy all my personal stuff from thrift stores.

4: They introduce you to the wild and wonderful world of heavy equipment and super heroes.

Excuse me, but have you realized all the cool toys that boys have? My three year old got a motorized back-hoe for Christmas, complete with a drop down bucket that you can dig with. Keep your barbies. I can’t imagine the damage I would have done to my Mother’s flower bed if I had had that during childhood. (Coming from someone who spray painted her Barbie Jeep black and re-named it The Beast III. I really like the Little Rascals.)

5: You gain an entire new level of patience and understanding.

You have to, there is no other way to get through life on the daily. Is that your grandmother’s antique table? Let me pour my juice all over it. Oh, your Aunt bought that China for you as a wedding gift? Let me throw that off the balcony. You love that necklace? Let me just rip the pendant right from the chain. All of these things have happened to me, and yet my kids are still alive.

6: Boys can do wonders for your diet.

It doesn’t matter if I am munching on a turd sandwich with a side of cat litter, if I’m eating it, my kids want it. If they want it, they get it. I only ever eat half of anything I fix myself. Works wonders for your figure, but I am always hungry and cranky. Sometimes I lock the door and sit on the toilet to eat a sandwich.

7: You get really well acquainted with the folks who work at Poison Control.

Seriously, I’ve called them so many times that on occasion people laugh when I give them my kid’s name. The last time I had to tell them that my son had ingested “Pure Seduction” Victoria’s Secret body wash and smelled like a giant orchid drowned in rose water. They cackled. He survived.

8: You really start to identify with “Jenny” from The League in more ways than one.

First off, if you’ve never watched The League, I suggest you do so. It’s on Netflix. Second, for those who do not know, Jenny is a wife and Mother and member of The League (group of men who play fantasy football) who really, really gets into sports. I’ve always loved sports, but living with a bunch of boys really kicks it into overdrive. Like I said earlier, this basketball season has crushed me, soul and spirit. Shedding tears over games is silly and unrealistic, but I really loved my UK team. Is there an alternate ending to this saga, and how I can I access it?

9: You really start to freak out about screwing your kids up.

Please god, just let me be slightly dysfunctional enough to make them funny. The fact that I’m trying to raise my boys into being good men is all-encompassing sometimes. I can’t sit down and really think about the enormity of it without fully going into freak out mode. Then I just think, if it all goes down hill, I can just blame my husband. That was a joke, I don’t really mean that…or DO I?

10: I get to the be the most important woman in their lives….for a little while.

Plus side. I’m hanging the moon over here on Sun Valley. I can wade through all the muck to be the one to be their constant. It’s worth it. I’d do it for the next eternity if it meant they’d never grow up and leave me. Not realistic. Now I just have to bide my time until I can terrorize their future wives and bully them into submission….I’m just joking. I’d never do that. Or would I??….

In short, Moms with all boys, own that title. It’s hard and trying, but it’s also completely awesome and so much fun. I can’t speak for the majority, but I could never see my life any other way than the way it is right now. House full of boys, me and my dog.

 

10 Things You Should Never Say to Mothers

There is one thing that I’ve learned since becoming a Mom, people will say the weirdest/most insulting things to you and not even know they are doing it. Some of the things that have been said to me since having my children have both made me laugh and caused steam to barrel out of my ears. Here are some of my all time favorites, and the ones that I hear the most. Whether you are a SAHM, working Mom, or a Mother still going to school, I’m sure everyone can relate!

 

1: You look great for having two kids.

This is the equivalent of asking someone if they are sick when they aren’t wearing makeup. Would I look like shit if I hadn’t had children, considering? This may not insult some people, but I’ve always felt that this was a double edged sword. Just tell Moms they look great, and leave out the “for having kids” part.

 

2: Wow. You dressed up today.

Grrrrr. Yes, I am a human being and a woman aside from being a Mom. Sometimes I like to feel good about myself and wear my nice clothes, and smell like something other than baby vomit. People find it so hard to believe when I wear nice stuff. News flash, I own more than pajamas and an apron.

 

3: What do you do all day?

Mani-Pedis and Netflix marathons. This pisses me off to no end. Yeah, I may be a stay at home mother, but I rarely have any time for myself. Every moment I’m home with my children, it’s devoted to them, or to maintaining my household. I wish I could stay at home all day and just have me time, but it doesn’t work that way with a three year old and a toddler. Don’t ask this question, especially if you have literally no clue what you are talking about.

 

4: You mean, you let your kids watch TV?

Yes, to keep my sanity and get house work done, I let them watch whatever the hell they want to. Judge on, judgy pants.

 

5: Do you ever regret having kids?

I am always so floored when people ask me this question. I feel like this question is in the same category as asking political opinions, and how much money someone makes. Why would you ever ask a person this? I had both of my boys young, but that does not give anybody an excuse to ask me this. People never cease to amaze me.

 

6: Don’t you miss your kids while you’re at work?

I have a lot of Mom friends that work, go to school and balance their careers  and I have heard several people ask them this question numerous times. Obvious answer, of freaking course they miss their kids when they are working, going to school, etc. What is wrong with people!? Don’t ask something that is obvious. This burns me up just as much as when someone asks me what I do all day.

 

7: Oh, so you’re just a Mom, huh.

Yeap, I am just raising two human beings, trying to make sure they have futures, turn out to be gentleman and make the world a  better place. No big deal.

 

8: How do you do it all?

I see this on social media all the time, especially towards women who are mothers and continue to go to school, or work, etc. Why is it so hard for people to realize that women can do it all, and have it all. Men can work, go to school and be fathers and nobody questions it, but when a woman does it, it;s suddenly unbelievable. Kudos to all your Mothers out there who are raising your kids and kicking ass at everything else, including school and work. Keep on keeping on, ladies.

9: Just call a sitter and come with us.

I wish it was that easy. I need days in advance to plan an outing. I need to know the exact time I am leaving, coupled with what time I will be back and an itinerary of everything in between. Not to mention finding somebody I trust enough to leave my children with…..right now I have a handful of  people; their grandmothers, cousins and a life long friend….

 

10: So, when you are gonna have another one?

Don’t. Just DON’T!

 

To My Baby on his 1st Birthday

Yesterday my baby celebrated his first birthday. Most of the day I was nostalgic, looking through my phone at all the hospital pictures, milestones, holding back tears while viewing videos of his first steps, and marveling at how much he’s changed in just one short year. Short would be an understatement. It feels like the space between bringing him home, and now has been only a few jumbled, tiresome, but joyous weeks. I still have a hard time making myself come to the realization that I no longer have a baby on my hands, he’s a toddler.

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From the moment I first saw two blue lines on that fateful test, I could not wait to meet my baby boy. I always knew that River was going to be a “he”. You can call it “Mom intuition” or whatever, but I just knew. I went out and bought up everything blue that I could find, and I couldn’t wait to decorate the nursery with sail boats, and anchors. Greyson was so excited, if not a little confused about getting a “bubby” but he would pat my belly and curiously ask why we put his old crib back up. Everyone could not wait for the day he arrived, and even through a painful false labor, having to be hospitalized at 36 weeks, and a nasty snow storm, River Scott arrived into the world on March 5, 2014 a bouncing 9 pounder……and was three weeks early. Everyone in the room laughed when I ordered my Mom to go straight to Pine Mountain Grill and load me up one of their famous salads…… but I was too busy coddling my baby boy to even eat it, and hours later my husband ending up having it for his supper while I was asleep. Food could wait at a time like that…

Bringing River home seems hazy to me now. I was in a lot pain, severely anemic and (dumbly) I had refused a blood transfusion that would have made me feel a world better. I settled into the routine of caring for two. I watched him as he got bigger. I felt so proud the first time he stretched his arms out to reach for me. Laughed until my sides hurt the first time we coaxed him into cackling out loud. Had to fight back big fat tears the first time he uttered the word, “Mom-Mom.” As days went by I found myself ticking off more firsts. First boo boo, first solid foods, first sippy cups, first time with whole milk, first time crawling, and then one day I woke up and he was walking like he’d always been. I also had many moments that were hard, moments when I felt that I wasn’t measuring up to be the kind of Mom that this (obviously) perfect baby deserved. I cried when I wasn’t able to get the hang of breast feeding. Felt like a failure when I accidentally popped off his little belly button while changing his diaper. Felt like I should just hand myself over to social services after I let him bump his head on the coffee table. All of those moments of fear and second guessing myself were eclipsed when checkup after checkup he was healthy, thriving, advanced in his development, and most importantly…happy.

Yesterday as we put one little candle on his cake and watched as he excitedly demolished his smash cake, all the sadness and anxiety of the day left me. For the first time in weeks, I came to realize that he’s only turning one. I have so much to be thankful for, and so much to look forward to. His little life is only starting, and there is still so much to see him do. I felt weirdly ashamed of myself for being so selfish in wanting to keep him little forever.

I write this blog as something that River can look back on one day, years from now, and read the ramblings of his semi nutty Mother, who wants to keep him a baby forever, but, who would be devastated in not getting to watch him grow up. Bubs, I look forward to so much with you, and seeing you turn into a boy, and then a man, and then a husband and father.

As I get away from myself on this, I have to remind my wandering mind that there are still more birthdays, T ball games, messy dinners, scraped knees, dirty cheeks to wipe, bubble baths to give, and many moments where Mom is still needed. The year has evaporated so quickly, I wonder if the rest of them will be that way? Only more reason for me to stop and enjoy every second with both of my children. As should everyone.

In closing, I want to say, Happy Birthday to my Baby. I love you with all my heart and soul, and hope that the years ahead of you bring you nothing but joy, happiness, success, fortune and love. You’ll always be my Skittle Wittle Bubbers Bubby Turdtail.

|MOM|

 

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20 Hilarious Pictures that put Parenting into Perspective.

Being a parent is really odd. I love being a Mom, and I find myself doing things for my kids that I never dreamed. My kids keep me laughing, and hopefully will continue to keep me young. I was going through my phone and was dying from some of these pictures and I wanted to share them with my readers. Parenting personified…..

 

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1: You will do the most ridiculous things for your children.

This was myself and my husband with G last Halloween. I was Wendy Darling, Kyle was Captain Hook, and of course, G was Peter Pan. River isn’t pictures, but he was Mr. Smee, and it was hilarious. They loved it, and we had the best time, even though people were taking pictures and running red lights to look at Captain Hook driving down the road in Hazard, Ky….

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2: Did I mention how tired you are all the time?

I literally had blue jeans and boots on in this pictures but was so tired, I didn’t bother to take them off. River was maybe three days old.

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3: Kids have an uncanny ability to get dirty, messy, etc.

This was spaghetti night at my house and I all but took a Brillo pad to River to get him clean. It’s basically like this after every meal, that’s why he gets three baths a day and numerous baby-wipe wipe-downs.

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4: Mornings are the worst for all involved.

These little turds have been up partying all night with a bottle and you’ve been with them. No matter how little sleep they get, it seems like they are always up at the crack of dawn ready to go and they will be fussy, and demanding, and cranky but it’s okay, you feed em anyway,

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5: All bets are off when sugar is involved.

I never understood as a kid why I wasn’t allowed to have candy or mountain dew, but now I freakin get it. That stuff is the equivalent of baby crack and even one cup cake has my seemingly normal three year turning into the spawn of Satan. A MESS.

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6: Pizza is your go-to form of sustenance.

My oldest is so freaking picky, it aggravates me to death. But, he will ALWAYS eat pizza, even in the rain with his redneck swimming pool after stepping in dog poop…

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7: Somehow they always manage to take selfies on your cell phone.

River was maybe 6 months old here, but as you can see, he managed a ceiling fan selfie. I have no clue, I just found it on my phone and didn’t ask questions.

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8: Your kids will always steal the show, just hop on into the backseat for now.

That’s my three year old dancing on my Grandma’s kitchen table. Why? Because his brother was showing how he could walk early and G needed all the attention. Check mate.

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9: Letting them dress themselves can be weird and hilarious.

I took Greyson out looking like Bob Dylan to the grocery store, and he never even took the sunglasses off. I’m not sure how many high fives he gave out but I was seriously uncomfortable….

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10: If you have multiples, you’re more than likely also doing a referee gig on the side.

That would be my angelic 11 month old, pulling the hair of my three year old. I have a bully and a pacifist on my hands, and it is not in the order you would think…(yes, the dog has a ring-side seat)

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11: When they know they’re in trouble they will do something like this that is so sweet and cute that you forgot what they did wrong in the first place.

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12: Did I mention that your kids want and will get ALL of your attention?

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13: Your kids will teach you that vanity knows no age.

G checks himself out in the mirror and gives himself a kiss every time he brushes his teeth. I can’t wait til the teen years! YAY!

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14: Christmas time can get super awkward.

This picture makes me cringe. I was 7 months pregnant, Santa was weird and G was terrified. It’s framed and hanging up in my house.

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15: Your kids want it all. Making decisions…what is that?

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18: There’s a lot of vomiting involved.

I’m so desensitized to it know, I will let them yak into my hands in public. AH well.

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19: When your kids want to play “Jake” in a kiddie pool, you play “Jake” in a kiddie pool.,..AND YOU LIKE IT!

This picture pretty much sums up my entire summer last year, and probably the summer coming….he busted my mouth right after this was snapped, and made me cry.

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20: Lots of nudity. I honestly can’t get my oldest to wear clothes. I just hope it’s a phase.

 

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21: There is nothing you wouldn’t do for your kids. Nothing. Nada. The love I have for my two little turd-tails know absolutely no bounds, and I thank god everyday that they love me, and that God picked me to be their Mom.

What would life be without a little bit of laughter?