Thursday, June 24, 2010

Being on Break

I apologize for the lapse in posts, but Mamas do like taking breaks. :) I'll be back to it next week!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Fun Friday: Swagger Wagon

If you haven't seen this yet . . . Oh. My. Goodness. HILARIOUS.




Thursday, June 17, 2010

Other Mamas Having Babies


Two nights ago a friend of mine gave birth to a beautiful baby boy, and Kevin and I got to be at the hospital when Baby Sam entered the world! There was so much excitement, so many smiles and happy tears. There truly is nothing like the day a baby is born. It is a wondrous miracle that completely amazes me every time it happens. And I praise our Creator for it!

I love to watch first-time Mamas and remember all the emotions that I felt when my firstborn entered our lives. It was the wildest and most earnest mixture of joy and fear and love and confusion. We couldn't believe the doctors and nurses were actually going to let us take a whole person home with us!

But we did. And it changed our lives forever. It's a wonderful adventure! And I love seeing new Mamas and Daddies as they're just setting out on theirs.

Mama Question: What advice do you have for brand new Mamas?


Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Grandparents

Today marks day two of a five-day "Camp Dottie and PawPaw" for my children. That's right--five whole days that my children are not at home. They are enjoying Vacation Bible School and a week with their grandparents, and my husband and I are enjoying having the house to ourselves. (Truth be told, though, we really miss our kids.)

Grandparents are so wonderful. It really is a special relationship--one that they tell us middle-folks (a.k.a. the parents) we just cannot understand. That's okay, though; we're happy to simply enjoy the perks, like free babysitting. Nevermind the fact that our children become completely spoiled when they're with them. The trade is definitely worth it!

Mama Question: How often do your kids get to see their grandparents?


Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Swimming Pools

http://blogs.trb.com/features/family/parenting/blog/toddler-swim04-thumb.jpgIn Jackson, Mississippi today, it is supposed to feel like it's more than a hundred degrees outside. (It does.) Where my sister lives in Louisiana, the forecast actually said "ridiculously hot" this week. It's hot, people. So my kids and I are taking full advantage of our YMCA membership and are spending hours and hours and hours at the pool, just as we have the past two summers.

It's a wonderful thing, because we're able to be outside and can actually tolerate it. (Bonus for me and my daughter Katie: no mosquitoes at the pool.) Also, I'm spending great time with my kids, because I'm much more likely to play at the pool than I am at home, where I'm distracted by tasks. (I won't lie, though--I do get some poolside reading and resting done, too.) Even though we go for hours at a time, I have never once heard my children say, "I'm bored" at the pool. Plus, they're getting all kinds of exercise, which not only is great for their bodies and minds and spirits, but it also wears them slap out. So bedtime's a breeze.

Off to the pool now!

Mama Question: Do you and your kiddos frequent the pool? How often do you go?


Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Cereal

There are multiple reasons why this Mama loves cereal.
  • I'm not a breakfast cook. Preparing lunch and dinner--great. But I am neither alert nor talented at anything in the mornings. So I don't really find joy in cooking breakfast. Or doing breakfast dishes. (Now, if someone else does the breakfast cooking and cleaning, I'll gladly partake.)
  • Cereal is just easy. Grab a bowl and a spoon, pour the cereal, pour the milk, done.
  • There are about 327,894 cereal options, so there's something for everyone.
  • The cereal box gets my brain working in the mornings. Since I pretty much just have a blank stare until my coffee kicks in, I can at least look like I'm reading something on the cereal box. I prefer the kids' cereal boxes, though. Finding hidden Fruity Pebbles in a picture is a lot more fun than reading about fiber.
  • The number one reason, though, for a Mama to love cereal: the kids can get it themselves. You get to sleep; they get to eat. Everyone wins.
Mama Question: Does anyone really pour their milk into a pitcher?!


Monday, June 7, 2010

Other Mamas

It is an undeniable fact that Mamas need other Mamas--other women who are currently in the same trenches that we are. Having the support of Mamas who have been in the trenches before us is also incredibly valuable, but there is a great need to have support from those who are still in the midst of it all. When our toddler pulls off his dirty diaper, and the dog is the first to investigate it; when our baby won't sleep through the night; or when it's our daughter's first day of kindergarten--we need to be able to call on the Mamas who can still freshly recall the frustration, sleeplessness, and emotions of it all.

They are the ones we can call when we are needing some added perspective or even accountability. They are the ones we can call just to vent or cry or laugh at ourselves. Or even if we don't have anything in particular to say, these women understand that we just needed to talk to another adult. And we'd gladly return the favor any day. We have the freedom to admit our shortcomings, our annoyances, our fears, and our questions, knowing that none of us has all the answers. We're all just figuring it out as we go, and we need these Mamas to remind us of this.

Even if we have the most amazingly supportive and involved husband in the world, he still can't replace that need we have for support from other Mamas. If for no other reason, he just can't fully understand the joys and woes of breastfeeding . . . or hormones. Nor does he want to.

Take some time to thank these wonderful Mamas in your life! And if you don't have this kind of support, I advise you to do all that you can to find it. You'll be glad you did!

Mama Question: Do you have this kind of support group? Share a story with us about a time when another Mama really helped you out in some way.


Friday, June 4, 2010

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Tips for Air Travel with Kids

In the last week or so, I've seen numerous requests from Mamas for advice in how to "successfully" do air travel with little ones in tow. Here's what I have to say about that:
  • Be sure to have things to entertain your little one. Don't be like me when I first flew with my nine-month-old. I didn't bring a single toy on the plane. Therefore, we were reduced to playing with a barf bag. Thankfully, it was empty.
  • Take the car seat! If there's an empty seat, you get to strap your kid down, and no one will think less of you for it. 
  • Remember that you will most likely never see these people again. So if they are less than understanding of your situation, just give them the look that you've been practicing. (Hope you brought your glasses!)
  • When all else fails, tell them the kid is teething.

Mama Question: What flying tips do you have?


Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Patience (and Trust) at Dinner Time

http://www.mommygarten.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/baby-hungry3-300x199.jpg

Do any other Mamas get the "I'm soooooooo hunnnnnnnngry" or "I'm staaaaaarrrrrrrrrrving" in the hour leading up to dinner? First of all, they're not starving. Secondly, can't they see that I'm working on getting dinner ready?! Thirdly, haven't I fed them dinner every single night of their entire lives??? Seriously. Give me some credit here.

That's all I have to say about this.

Mama Question: Is this true at your house, too?


Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Swaddling

I know it's a proven fact that babies love to be swaddled, but just looking at those tightly-wrapped little bodies sends me into a panic mode requiring a paper bag to breathe in and out of. Okay, that's not completely true. I've never even tried to breathe using a paper bag. (Incidentally, how does that even work?) BUT I really cannot imagine feeling comforted by having my arms and legs bound and rendered immobile.

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2777/4513257197_94596e0ee3_o.png
I personally never got the hang of swaddling, even after three babies. And it had nothing to do with my panic attacks. Thankfully, my husband was a good swaddler, so I let him have the mummifying honors. Of course, now they make swaddling really easy with special blankets and velcro. That would've been helpful for me, I think.

Maybe I should've tried a little harder to improve my swaddling skills. After all, babies seem to love their little cocoons, and Mamas continue to do it century after century. We know that even Mary wrapped Jesus in swaddling clothes. I can't imagine constraining the Baby Messiah's body that way.

I think I need a paper bag . . .

Mama Question: Were you good at swaddling? And did your baby seem to really like it?