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Work at Home Moms- WAHM. Not to be confused with 80s pop sensation WHAM.

Everything needs a label these days and it’s driving me nuts. Do you work at home? Do you stay at home? Do you work away from home?

Are you a SAHM, WAHM, or WAFHM? What? I know! I’m confused too!!

When I chose to have kids, all I wanted to do was just not go back to the job I was currently at. My husband and I saved up my income so that after the baby was born, I could be home with her.

Then it worked out that the company I was employed with went out of business. There wasn’t a job for me to return to. I loved staying home with Emma. I couldn’t imagine having to arrange my lifestyle to go back to an office and leave her with someone. It just never occurred to me.

HOWEVER, I never did mind anyone that did make that choice to go back to work after maternity leave. We all have different reasons why we want to. So who cares?

But it seems lately if you are a mom, you need a label as to what you do with your time. Here’s my rundown of the latest.

Do you work at home doing a job for a client or a boss and check in remotely? That’s a WAHM. Work At Home Mom. This is tricky. Then you have to keep the kiddos occupied while you get your job done. Maybe you have someone come and help with the kids or you take the kids to day care. This might save you from commuting to an office, but still allow you to get some work done. Maybe the kids are off to school while you work.

Or do you work at an office? This is a WAFHM. Work Away From Home Mom. Then you have the same situation of dealing with childcare, commuting, and even if the kids are at school, someone has to be there for them when they come home.

Finally, there’s the moms who stay at home with their kids and don’t get paid anything from anyone. That’s a SAHM. Stay At Home Mom. We know what she does. Wipes up spills all day and poo and puke,  entertains, is a concierge, laundress, cook, nurse, craft adviser.

Then there’s the SITMVAD. Stay In The Mini Van All Day mom. She can be a combination of some of the above and this at the same time. Some may call this a Soccer Mom. I just call it a mom who is busy and needs to drive all over creation for her kids.

Don’t forget the mom we all went to be- SAHWWM. Stay At Home With Wine Mom. This needs no explanation.

Not only is this a handy guide to some of the acronyms you’ve been seeing lately, it’s also a good reminder that ALL MOMS WORK FOR CRYING OUT LOUD!

And I respect each and every one for the jobs they do.

The next time someone asks what I do, I will say, “I’m a mom”. And that should be enough.

 

 

My thighs are flabby, and I’m trying to love them anyway.

The other day on my Facebook wall I asked if people could have one wish, what would it be for. About 95% of you said you want to be skinnier, or be able to eat what you want and not gain weight.

I should also add that people wished to be richer too. I wouldn’t mind that either.

But as far as weight goes, let me try and help. Ladies listen up.

I want to tell you that you are just fine.

You want to fit in that swimsuit because online websites like E!Online post pictures like this one-

with a headline called ‘Bikini Body Wars’ and have viewers vote on which one looks better. Really? There’s mommy wars and now bikini body wars? Because I think it’s great to line up three women who look amazing all in their own way, and let the scrutinizing public pick which one ‘rocks a bikini’ the best.

Insert big eye roll. Oh wait, I just saw my brain.

The Girl made a comment to me in the car when I pointed out someone we know who has what I called, ‘a beer gut’ (he does like beer). She said, “well you have a mom gut.” Ouch.

That stung. I told her that I have a perfectly fine tummy that has squishy skin from having babies, but please don’t imply that I am fat.

I sat in the front seat facing forward and pouted a little. How am I to continue my own body love and try to encourage her to love herself, if she makes flippant remarks about my flab?

She apologized and said she was only joking. But it still hurt. Now this isn’t to get all down on Emma. She was just being a sarcastic teenager, which 90% of the time, we banter back and forth and have a good laugh afterwards.

But that particular moment, I wasn’t feeling it. I felt like crying instead. I felt like screaming, “I can’t be perfect, I can just be me!”

Later, she and I had a private exchange that ended in hugs and tears. She apologized again and told me how beautiful and chic I am. Which surprised me because I thought she thought I was a dork.

I told her that I’m always praising her wonderful body for the way it is. And it means a lot if she would do the same for me. That even though I’m older, my thighs are dimpled, my butt jiggles when I run, and my boobs look like sad, sad strawberries left in a food dehydrator too long, I still need acceptance. I work for how I look. I try to take care of myself and do things for my health, inside and out.

And then I realized, I need to stop describing myself with these words- flabby, jiggly, strawberries…

I think she saw me as a woman at that moment, and not just her mom. I’m hoping it was a breakthrough. This is when the tears came and we hugged it out.

I want us all to have these breakthroughs. To be forgiving of each other and ourselves. To know that if you are doing what you can to eat reasonably well, get in some exercise and look after yourself- you don’t have to look like Gisele Bundchen or Jennifer Aniston or Kate Beckinsale. Do I try to improve how I look? You bet. Here’s one way I’ve done it- read here.

I want to be sinewy and sleek. Toned and taut. But hey, I’m okay if I’m not those things. Remember this post about me in my bikini? Am I Fat?  I’m a little soft and squishy, but I think I look damn good.

I want you to say that about yourself too. I want you to look in a mirror and realize that you look damn good. Whatever you’re trying to change- if it’s for your health and strength- keep doing it. Great! If it’s because you think you need to because of what 3% of other gals in this world look like, then pause, and tell yourself how good looking you are right now in THIS moment. Not tomorrow. Not after your diet. Now.

And dear sweet Emma; you are beautiful now and you will be beautiful in 30 years when you have the same stretch marks and cellulite that I have. And I hope you have a child that tells you that you are the most wonderful woman who is beautiful inside and out, just like you told me that night.

 

 

 

I Just Want To Pee Alone- Chicago Book Signing Event – Have you gotten your tickets yet?

Reminder- last few days to get tickets. Please come- I want to see you!!!

This is so much coolness my head might explode.

I’m calling this part of my official book tour. I’m like Chelsea Handler, or Carrie Fisher. Maybe a little of both but with less booze and pills in my system.

I’m gonna be in Chicago with 14 of the authors of I Just Want To Pee Alone and we’re doing a book signing!

Buy your tickets for July 26; 7-10pm, for $15. That ticket gets you a book and a drink.

  • RSVP here on the event page on Facebook.
  • Buy your tickets on PayPal here
  • Tell all your friends so they can come too!
  • Do it now before the tickets sell out!
  • Comment below so I know you’re coming and can wave spazztically at you when I see you; or hug you awkwardly and smell your hair.

 

Oh my gosh, I’m so excited to see you there. If you’re attending BlogHer already, you have to come!

And if you’re related to me or have known me since before puberty, you have to come too!

Yes, I will be reading from the book. And maybe I’ll share another humiliating story about my marriage.

 

Darn. It’s not broken.

I mean- yay. (Pfft.)

 

Remember when you were a kid, and you wanted a cast on your arm, just like the one little Bobby at school got when he fell off the monkey bars, because everyone got to sign it, and he had a note that he couldn’t do PE. Remember that?  And he told the class that his mom bought him ice cream and let him pick what he wanted for dinner that night and he didn’t have to do his chores because of his big owie?

I was so jealous of little Bobby. His life seemed so perfect. Chill-axing, watching cartoons and nursing his big cast-arm.

I mean, I didn’t WANT a broken arm per say. I wanted the attention, note from PE, excuse not to do chores, and dinner and ice cream.

So when this week I thought for sure I might’ve broken my foot, I admit, I was a little bummed when the doctor told me it would heal eventually on its own and that it was nerve damage, not a break, and to just limit my Zumba.

Limit my Zumba? Have you seen my ass lately doctor? So you’re telling me that my foot really isn’t THAT injured, so I should be able to do all the regular shit and chores I normally do, but just hobble around awkwardly until it heals? Even though I’m in a boat load of pain? Oh swell.

Here- let me catch you up on what happened.

About a month ago, I was playing soccer with Owen. We were goofing around in the front yard. I kicked the ball to him and felt massive pain in my foot. Right at my toe. I knew something was wrong. But I soldiered on and ignored it. I’m tough like that.

For weeks, I’ve been putting pain patches on, acupuncture, and even castor oil packs. Ancient healing methods haven’t been successful. I’m used to living in pain. Migraines, cramps, angry stuck ovaries, and bad feet. So you know, whatever. I can deal.

Went to Zumba for the first time in a LONG time. (Remember this Zumba story here?)

And I had so much fun! I could feel my ass melting away. I must’ve burned 600 calories dropping it low. About 3/4 of the way through, my foot was screaming in pain and asking me to stop dropping it so low. It felt like it was on fire.

So I eased up on my booty shaking and took it easy. That night it was incredibly tender and sore. The next morning it was just as bad.

As I was doing my Target run (hobble) and errands, I was in so much pain, I gimped on over to the Urgent Care that is in the same shopping complex.

Once it was my turn, they have me step on the scale. And to add insult (literally) to injury (literally), the scale mocked me an extra 5 pounds.

My day was going so nicely. (Insert sarcasm) I was in pain, started Aunt Flo, and was gaining weight by the second.

I asked the nurse if they served wine and chocolate. She chuckled. But no, they don’t.

When the initial x-rays showed no break, they sent me to an orthopedic specialist to determine if it was a stress fracture or something. The next day I saw the specialist.

Nice guy. But not nice enough to give me a big boot, vicodin, and a note telling my family to do all the work because mommy has to rest. Dang him!

Instead of that, he gave me a shot of cortisone and told me that the pain was nerve damage, not bone damage. I have a history of  neuromas and they are a bitch. Apparently, I pissed one off. So yeah.

The shot of cortisone hurt like a mother f–ker. I won’t lie. And it took awhile for the cortisone to kick in. I’m not allowed to go for any runs, skips, hops, Zumba classes, or track and field events. Darn- I was really looking forward to those.

What I am allowed to do is- make dinner, pack lunches, scrub toilets, scoop cat poop, vacuum, do laundry and get the groceries.

Dammit. Where is that doctor’s note when you want it??

Oh well, the good news is, since it isn’t broken, I will be in ship shop shape to attend BlogHer in Chicago at the end of July with all my blogging pals and fellow authors of the Pee book. It’s going to be so exciting!

Summer break hasn’t started yet in these parts, so at least while the kids are in school, I should rest up my foot. Excuse me, a new episode of Real Housewives of New Jersey is on. Gotta go.

 

 

The wind beneath my wings- RTLF #36

I’m going to get so sappy here people. Grab some tissues. I’ll be so sappy that by the time I’m done, we will be a bucket of syrup. Eh? Oh yeah!

Do you have that one person in your life that will love you and do ANYTHING for you? ANYTHING? It’s hard to know what people will do when they are tested. But my mom is the person in my life who would do whatever I needed. She would. And it’s not whatever I want- no. It’s whatever I NEED. So if it’s tough love, sweet love, bail money, whatever…. she’s there.

Please know, that my husband is A-#1 in my life. His blog post is coming later.Trust me, he’s a saint.

Some things have become apparent in my life this week. Some ‘fan hitting shit’ things apparent. No, I didn’t rob a bank. Or cheat on my McSweetie. But I might as well, because I felt like dirt. I felt like pond scum and I don’t even know why I let myself get this way.

I’ve been a crappy housekeeper and financial planner for the family. If money is the root of all evil, I let it get in my way of running my family properly. That sounds so vague and weird, but everything is fine. I will be expanding on these items soon. When I can get the words. Because I know there’s a lot of you out there who feel the same way.

If there were some Oprah ‘A-Ha’ moments, this was the week.

A-Ha #1- I let myself get in a dark place of self loathing where I only focused on my aging face, my flabby body, and my feelings of inadequacies. (Duh, I know) Stupid? Well, why do alcoholics drink? Why do Anorexics not eat? None of it makes sense. Smart people do and think dumb stuff. This I do know.

Am I surprising you? I know. Happy little, funny Frugie was down in the dumps. Was it depression? I don’t know. I don’t have a professional opinion of what all this is. I just know I was destructive in my self-talk.

A-Ha #2- I married the best man on earth. He’s smart, patient, understanding and most of all- forgiving. And I think, gosh darn it, he loves me. He loves me so much he puts up with my fuck-ups, my female hormonal break-downs, and my prison pajamas. No, not an orange jumpsuit – gray sweat shorts and a gray t-shirt. Ala Target, it’s most unflattering.

A-Ha #3- My mom is the most selfless, giving, wise woman on the planet. Some of you already know this. I know this. But even through her struggles of looking after my dad, my sister, herself, she is there for me.

How lucky am I to be the daughter of such a woman?

My dad is recovering nicely after his broken hip. She will have her own health issues to deal with soon. And my sister is a disabled adult living at home. She takes care of all of them. The last few months have been a trial for sure. But she’s getting through it. We both are.

The woman is freakin’ Mother Teresa!

If I text her, call her, email her, with my woes- she lends an ear. Always.

Does she tell me straight to my face what I don’t want to hear sometimes? Yes. Does she still have the look in her eyes and that pursed mouth of when I was ten and I sassed her or something? Yes! The look. One look from mom and you knew! Oh, you knew!

She always reminds me of my gifts and my talents. She builds me up so I can go back to my job of mothering, wife-ing, volunteering, blogging… whatever.

I want to do so much for her. Because I know she’s tired. She’s worn out. But life keeps chucking shit our way, and then I need her too. So she gives and she gives. I’m still the daughter. I might be 40 years old. But I still need my mom.

And thank God she is there for me.

Are we sappy yet? Have we made syrup? I’m starting to cry in tissues again, so I’ll stop here.

There’s more where this story came from.

I’m fine. Really. And everything is great. I’m full of blessings and gifts I can’t take for granted. My mom helped me get there this week. She did. She is the wind beneath my wings.

<tissue please>

 

 

 

Maxi pad? No. Maxi dress.

I swore last summer you wouldn’t find me in a maxi dress. It sounded ridiculous. I hate the name- Maxi dress. Why not just call them long dresses? Or, I don’t know- dresses?

I like to go to Target and buy my maxi dresses in a size small. I feel it gives me some cosmic satisfaction. Like jumbo shrimp. An oxymoron.

Who’s calling who a moron? Not me!

Okay, here goes- 10 reasons to wear a maxi dress and why I’ll be living in them this summer. Yes- it’s called crow- and I’m eating a tasty dish of it as I type this. In my maxi dress. I did get mine at Target- a basic black one that will make me look chic no matter what.

What I learned at MamaCon

Vagillion – n. a million vaginas or in reference to a lot of women. (source- Urban Dictionary)

Vagillion- the word I said by accident, when introducing Nikki of Moms Who Drink and Swear at the comedy show- Honey I Shrunk My Libido.

A brilliant mistake. Like Edison and the light bulb, Ben Franklin and his kite, I coined a phrase I didn’t even know existed. So now I give you a vagillion reasons to attend MamaCon 2014. Okay, I’ll make a short list of a few reasons and we’ll call it good, ‘kay?

(This list is not in numerical order, as you can see.)

85. Do not feel guilty for taking time for yourself
This is important. We are horrible at constantly flexing the guilt muscle. You are thinking of all the things you could or should be doing, and sitting in a seminar with a bunch of moms learning about how to take time for yourself, doesn’t seem like one of those things. Well, let me tell you- it is.

You have to fill your tank to be able to give to others. <pshhsk> (that’s the sound of the loud speaker) “This is your Captain speaking- Mom’s, put your oxygen masks on first.”

Got it? Good.

33. Don’t do chores begrudgingly.
This is hard, I know. Maybe harder than taking time for yourself and not feeling guilty. But I learned that if I want my kids to do chores, I better do my own chores without complaining. Being productive is good. Sure laundry and dishes may not be that fun, but darn it, it’s not hard and it needs to get done. So yeah, I will only complain about chores on Facebook and my blog, not in front of my children. Oh, and I told McSweetie this too. He agrees that rolling his eyes whenever I ask him to take out the trash or put his washed shorts away, is probably not a good example in front of the kids.

122. Hook the shit out of closets.
I know you’re thinking, ‘what in thee sam hill is she talking about?’ Well, it was an organizing expert that shared a nice tidbit about using vertical spaces. We need to do it more. Horizontal, we have nailed. Covered, quite literally. But vertical- there’s a whole new world of storage if we put hooks all over our closets, the backs of doors and under shelves. I will be making a trip to Home Depot soon. Translation- I will be sending McSweetie to Home Depot soon.

22. I need to not worry about the mythical relationship between food and exercise. There is no relationship between food and exercise. They don’t know each other. They’ve never met. There’s a relationship I have with both of them and it’s called, I need them to live. Yeah. It’s that simple. I need to stop thinking over every little calorie, stop beating myself up for every missed trip to the gym. I will eat, I will exercise. I have to. It’s how humans survive. I will eat when I’m hungry, and try to move as much as possible. And this includes trips to the gym, walking the dog, playing catch or pogo-sticking with Owen, or a roll in the sack with hubs. So there.

5. I can host a comedy show like nobody’s business. I’m no Tina Fey or Ellen DeGeneres, but when I impersonated urinating like a sprinkler and read my Sky Rockets in Flight  blog for the crowd, there was much laughter. And I can’t take all the credit. The fabulous ladies, Mom comedians Jacki Kane (jackikane.com), Joanie Quinn (livetired.net), Nikki Schulak (nikkischulak.com) of Honey I Shrunk My Libido and Nikki of Moms Who Drink and Swear had the crowd of women, eating out of their hand. I burned a vagillion calories that night laughing. See what I did there?

I hear there’s a MamaCon in Chicago come October. If I play my cards right, and save my lip gloss money, I might get to go!

See you then!

 

 

Scary Mommy book review and a Mother’s Day Giveaway

 

Hey it’s Mother’s Day next week. You know what that means? Macaroni necklaces and handprint pictures that you will treasure forever. Or not.

Don’t think I’m a bitch for saying this- but sometimes for Mother’s Day, I would actually like a present that isn’t an outline of my child’s hand, or I don’t know, a shower head fixture. Now that the kids are older, I don’t get many egg crate jewelry boxes or seashell decoupages. And not to say I didn’t enjoy the ones I did get in my past. I did. I remember vividly tearing up at the hand print poem Owen gave me the Mother’s day he was in Kindergarten. It was precious. And I understand that McSweetie doesn’t really know what to do with Mother’s day anyway. Do I get a simple bouquet of flowers and call it good? Or do I need a giant diamond pendant that signifies all the fabulous things I do each and every day?

Well, neither.

I think flowers are a rip-off at Mother’s Day. They jack up the prices. And a giant diamond pendant is a little ridiculous. Just a little. A medium-sized diamond pendant wouldn’t be that ridiculous though…

So let’s be real here. We want to share all the real things we love and hate about Mother’s Day. You know there are those things that suck about it! And I thought what would be more perfect than a review of an awesome new book. Recently, I got the privilege of a copy of the new book Scary Mommy; Motherhood Comes Naturally  (and Other Vicious Lies) by Jill Smokler. I was tickled that I got a preview of the book from her publisher and I couldn’t wait to share my book review with you. It does not disappoint.

If you come from the point of view that motherhood isn’t all baby powder freshness and cooing lullabies, you will love Jill’s book. This is a second installment of her Scary Mommy tales. All I can say is, where was this woman when Emma was a baby?

Some Scary Mommy Confessions you can probably relate to:

“I beat my kids at Super Mario Bros. and proceeded to do a victory dance that made them all cry. Whoops.”

“For Mother’s Day, I will trim my pubes. And then I’ll pleasure myself while fantasizing about child-free days, endless bottles of wine, and the time when my husband was actually sexy.”

And my favorite-

“For years we’ve been assuming our daughter is just in an annoying phase. Turns out, she’s actually just really annoying.”

 

So for all you hard working, (every mom is a working mom) tireless, selfless mothers out there- I’m doing something special.

Enter for a chance to win a copy of Motherhood Comes Naturally (and Other Vicious Lies) by Jill Smokler, and I will throw in a copy of I Just Want To Pee Alone! As a bonus giveaway- if you prove in the comments with a link to a social media site that you told your friends about Scary Mommy’s book, I will randomly select a winner for something special by ME! No macaroni necklaces here, this will be a great load of loot, I promise.

Jill has been crazy busy promoting her book on the Today show and is starting a book tour- Find her cities here. 

I want to help her sell a ton of books. She has three kids to put through college people- or pay for therapy, either way.

So enter and share!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Parenting: Illustrated with Crappy Pictures is now in a really non-crappy book

Do you know the blog, Parenting: Illustrated with Crappy Pictures? If you don’t, you need to.

Here’s why:

It’s funny

She nails the parenting stuff to a ‘T’

The pictures really aren’t that crappy (okay, maybe a little), but make everything more funny.

 

Her book comes out this week and I was thrilled that I received an early-bird copy to get to read. Oh my goodness- I snorted out loud! My husband wondered what I was reading. He thought it might be that I was re-reading I Just Want to Pee Alone. True- I snorted at that too, but this time, it was Crappy Pictures I was laughing at.

Here’s some of my favorite highlights-from the Chapter- The 50 Crappy Laws of Parenting-

Law #10- “After a long car drive during which you hoped they would nap, they fall asleep a mile from your destination.”

Law #39- “They only spike a fever after the sun goes down and the doctor’s office is closed.”

Law #44- “The baby will fall asleep on you, but only when you have to pee. Very badly.”

Amber has asked her readers what they want her to do in the event her book gets on a best seller list. Like a challenge, per se to encourage people to buy the book.

Here’s some of her kids’ suggestions. By the way- she has two boys they are called Crappy Boy and Crappy Baby-

Here’s one idea

 

I think this is a good one though-

 

My vote is that she takes a real picture of her face and let’s us see her non-crappy self! But going to Disneyland is a good 2nd choice.

I’m giving away a copy of her book to one of you!!

And… wait for it- a copy of I JUST WANT TO PEE ALONE as well!

Yay- everyone is happy. By the way, she wrote a review of our book here that you can read. And low and behold, she graced us with some of her fine artwork. I just love it!

 

Here’s what you have to do:

Enter according to the Rafflecopter instructions, it gives you all kinds of chances to win.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

You can always buy the book as well!

I Just Want to Pee Alone- the book

 

 

Holy cow. I’m published in a book. A real pages with paper and ink- book. Not the ones stapled together in middle school you wrote in English class. Or the ones you tied together with string or ribbon from elementary school. A book.

Motherhood is the toughest – and funniest – job you’ll ever love. Raising kids is hard work. The pay sucks, your boss is a tyrant, and the working conditions are pitiful – you can’t even take a bathroom break without being interrupted with another outrageous demand.

Hasn’t every mother said it before? “I just want to pee alone!”

I Just Want to Pee Alone is a collection of hilarious essays from 37 of the most kick ass mom bloggers on the web. You will laugh, you will cry, you will want to share this book with every mom you know.

Featuring the hilarious Divine Secrets of a Domestic Diva, My Life and Kids, Bad Parenting Moments, People I Want to Punch in the Throat, and many others, and ME!

Kindle version and paperback available on Amazon, see the link above! For iTunes- click here

And if you needed any convincing, the reviews are in and folks are saying it’s hilarious. Oh, and we just happen to be #1 on Amazon’s Parenting and Humor category. No biggy.

 

People I Want to Punch in the Throat

Insane in the Mom Brain

The Divine Secrets of a Domestic Diva

Baby Sideburns

Rants From Mommyland

You Know it Happens at Your House Too

The Underachiever’s Guide to Being a Domestic Goddess

My Life and Kids

Bad Parenting Moments

Let Me Start By Saying

Frugalista Blog

Suburban Snapshots

Ninja Mom

Four Plus an Angel

Honest Mom

Binkies and Briefcases

Naps Happen

Kelley’s Break Room

Toulouse & Tonic

HouseTalkN

Hollow Tree Ventures

The Fordeville Diaries

Snarkfest

Mom’s New Stage

Nurse Mommy Laughs

The Dose of Reality

The Mom of the Year

Life on Peanut Layne

Momaical

Cloudy, With a Chance of Wine

Confessions of a Cornfed Girl

I Love Them Most When They’re Sleeping

Random Handprints

RachRiot

You’re My Favorite Today

Funny is Family

My Real Life