Monday, January 24, 2011

Lessons to learn BEFORE having kids

(Saw this on facebook - don't know who wrote it so please know I do not claim to be this funny or insightful. My favorites are Lessons 2 and 8)

Lesson 1
1. Go to the grocery store.
2. Arrange to have your salary paid directly to their head office.
3. Go home.
4. Pick up the paper.
5. Read it for the last time.

 Lesson 2
Before you finally go ahead and have children, find a couple who already are parents and berate them about their...
1. Methods of discipline.
2. Lack of patience.
3. Appallingly low tolerance levels.
4. Allowing their children to run wild.
5. Suggest ways in which they might improve their child's breastfeeding, sleep habits, toilet training, table manners, and overall behavior.
Enjoy it because it will be the last time in your life you will have all the answers.

Lesson 3
A really good way to discover how the nights might feel...
1. Get home from work and immediately begin walking around the living room from 5PM to 10PM carrying a wet bag weighing approximately 8-12 pounds, with a radio turned to static (or some other obnoxious sound) playing loudly. (Eat cold food with one hand for dinner)
2. At 10PM, put the bag gently down, set the alarm for midnight, and go to sleep.
3. Get up at 12 and walk around the living room again, with the bag, until 1AM.
4. Set the alarm for 3AM.
5. As you can't get back to sleep, get up at 2AM and make a drink and watch an infomercial.
6. Go to bed at 2:45AM.
7. Get up at 3AM when the alarm goes off.
8. Sing songs quietly in the dark until 4AM.
9. Get up. Make breakfast. Get ready for work and go to work (work hard and be productive)

Repeat steps 1-9 each night. Keep this up for 3-5 years. Look cheerful and together.

Lesson 4
Can you stand the mess children make? To find out...
1. Smear peanut butter onto the sofa and jam onto the curtains.
2. Hide a piece of raw chicken behind the stereo and leave it there all summer.
3. Stick your fingers in the flower bed.
4. Then rub them on the clean walls.
5. Take your favorite book, photo album, etc. Wreck it.
6. Spill milk on your new pillows. Cover the stains with crayons. How does that look?

Lesson 5
Dressing small children is not as easy as it seems.
1. Buy an octopus and a small bag made out of loose mesh.
2. Attempt to put the octopus into the bag so that none of the arms hang out.

Time allowed for this - all morning.

Lesson 6
Forget the BMW and buy a mini-van. And don't think that you can leave it out in the driveway spotless and shining. Family cars don't look like that.
1. Buy a chocolate ice cream cone and put it in the glove compartment.
Leave it there.
2. Get a dime. Stick it in the CD player.
3. Take a family size package of chocolate cookies. Mash them into the back seat. Sprinkle cheerios all over the floor, then smash them with your foot.
4. Run a garden rake along both sides of the car.

Lesson 7
Go to the local grocery store. Take with you the closest thing you can find to a pre-school child. (A full-grown goat is an excellent choice). If you intend to have more than one child, then definitely take more than one goat. Buy your week's groceries without letting the goats out of your sight. Pay for everything the goat eats or destroys. Until you can easily accomplish this, do not even contemplate having children.

Lesson 8
1. Hollow out a melon.
2. Make a small hole in the side.
3. Suspend it from the ceiling and swing it from side to side.
4. Now get a bowl of soggy Cheerios and attempt to spoon them into the swaying melon by pretending to be an airplane.
5. Continue until half the Cheerios are gone.
6. Tip half into your lap. The other half, just throw up in the air.

You are now ready to feed a nine- month-old baby.

Lesson 9
Learn the names of every character from Sesame Street , Barney, Disney, the Teletubbies, and Pokemon. Watch nothing else on TV but PBS, the Disney channel or Noggin for at least five years. (I know, you're thinking What's 'Noggin'?) Exactly the point.

Lesson 10
Make a recording of Fran Drescher saying 'mommy' repeatedly. (Important: no more than a four second delay between each 'mommy'; occasional crescendo to the level of a supersonic jet is required). Play this tape in your car everywhere you go for the next four years. You are now ready to take a long trip with a toddler.

Lesson 11
Start talking to an adult of your choice. Have someone else continually tug on your skirt hem, shirt- sleeve, or elbow while playing the 'mommy' tape made from Lesson 10 above. You are now ready to have a conversation with an adult while there is a child in the room.

This is all very tongue in cheek; anyone who is parent will say 'it's all worth it!' Share it with your friends, both those who do and don't have kids. I guarantee they'll get a chuckle out of it. Remember, a sense of humor is one of the most important things you'll need when you become a parent!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

My child is very advanced

If you come here enough, you'll notice a change! :) The blog is now The title matches. I also changed some colors around. I still want to put a picture in the header but have no idea how to make it a reasonable size that doesn't take up 20 feet. I don't understand the html editor. Scary lines and crazy lingo.

But might think my new title is a little arrogant. Well, that's okay because it's not. It's a joke.

It began during my first pregnancy. My sister-in-law wanted to feel the baby kick. And of course, as soon as she placed her hand on my tummy, Itty Bitty immediately ceased her dance party and laid perfectly still. Pointing at my belly, I said to her, "Come on, kick!" Then I told the relatives standing by, "She'll listen; she's very advanced."

And so it began...a recurring statement made when our child does something brilliant.

Which, in our eyes, happens to be quite a lot.

I think most parents want to believe their child is perfect, capable, and advanced. Not a bad thing, in my opinion. How can you not totally love your baby? But we also have to keep in mind that there are so many things we have absolutely no control over. It's not a reflection of the parents if your child teethes by 4 months, or still has yet to pop a tooth when she turns 1. Unless you're purposely knocking your baby down every time she tries to stand up, you can't determine when she'll start walking. Most parents talk to and encourage new words/signs. But if the kid isn't going to say "Daddy" even at 14 months (ahem ahem), there's not much we can do about it.

But the fact that she can say/sign Up, Please, Mommy, Chip, Some, That, Yeah, Thank You, More, Music, Kitty, All Done, makes up for that.

My, she is so advanced.

Sunday, January 09, 2011

Facebook, you are hypocritical

Mark Zuckerberg, owner of facebook, needs to explain himself. He has some sort of immature problem with women's breasts. He clearly can not tell the difference between the natural purpose of them and the obscenity of pornography. Because - surprise - once again breastfeeding mothers have been discriminated against. On his own page he says, "I'm trying to make the world a more open place by helping people connect and share." Oh, what a wonderful person you are, Mr. Z! Thank you for being so awesome! Your little sentence makes us appreciate how amazing facebook is! You have made a wonderful Eutopia for us all.

HA. Not. As a breastfeeding mother, I am irate. 

Time and time again, personal pictures of breastfeeding, and sometimes women's entire accounts, are deleted under the claim that they violated the Terms of Use. How on earth can breastfeeding pictures do this? Well, they don't. But let me explain facebook's bloopy logic behind this stupidity. Facebook tries to keep their site clean by forbiding the posting of any pictures that are obscene. We appreciate their efforts to prevent pornographic images from entering the site. So when an obscene picture is posted, a facebook alarm goes off, and one of facebook's workers removes the picture. 

At least, that's what they'd like us to believe. But it doesn't happen like that. Not all obscene pictures are removed. Actually, RARELY are the real obscene pictures removed. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to find sexually explicit images while searching facebook. These degrading pictures of women flourish on the website without removal no matter how many times they are reported. Instead, facebook saves that right of removal for beautiful images of a baby drinking the BEST food for him/her. Then the facebook gods of decency hail from on high.

Today, the Earthy Motherhood fanpage was removed for violating Facebook Terms of Use. Among many other natural topics of the site, one large focus was breastfeeding support. In the beginning of this month, another wonderful source for breastfeeding, The Leaky B@@b, was removed from facebook as well. After much protesting from thousands of users and negative media attention, facebook finally reinstated the page with a lousy excuse claiming "a glitch." Seriously?

No, a glitch is when facebook chat is not working (surprise!).  A glitch is when your comments take forever to post. A glitch is when your tags don't save. A glitch is not manual, exclusive, and repeated removal of breastfeeding content. Breastfeeding has been a target for years. It absolutely has to stop. Sometimes I want to delete my facebook account in protest for their boobophobia. Instead, I have joined these protests to make my voice heard.

Bring Back Earthy Motherhood!
Hey, Facebook! Breastfeeding is not obscene.
Stop deleting mother support groups on fb
If breastfeeding offends you, put a blanket over YOUR head

If you know of any others, share them! Share this post. Spread the word.

*Another blog about this. Great message, gross pics. Be warned.*

Friday, January 07, 2011


I always hear stories about realizations people have - epiphanies that change their lives. It sounds so amazing...suddenly knowing exactly what would make everything better, easier. That "aha" moment. Now I understand. It would be great if I had a realization about every little inconvenience, life mystery, or psychological puzzle. There would never be a misunderstanding again! Today while nursing my little toddler, I was thinking about this and feeling sorry for myself that I wasn't clever enough to realize more. Then a thought occurred to me.

Life isn't always going to be easy. Every thing we need won't be dropped into our laps. Life is a constant change. People are constantly changing too. If we were all meant to be perfect, we would have been canonized saints before we were born. But saints and other amazing people have come before us, and by their examples, their trials, challenges, and victories, we can learn and strive to be better. Maybe life is about remembering all the wonderful, insightful words of wisdom we come across and continually applying them to our lives. We don't necessarily need everything to be easy. Sometimes we need to try new things by ourselves, and see what works.

Okay, so maybe I had a realization after all.


Thursday, January 06, 2011

Homeopathy For Beginners

My little munchkin has a cold. Poor thing. Occasionally she'll catch one of those bugs going around. It's a scary thing when your baby is sick - you want to do everything in your power to make them feel better. Thankfully, with the wonderful medicine of homeopathy, we are able to do just that! I wanted to share some great resources for how I treat my family when sickness comes to town.

First is this wonderful book. The beginning chapters explain what homeopathy is, and then the book goes into different ailments people can take care of at home on their own with different remedies. They explain everything and make it easy to understand while being extremely informative. They explain the safety, the effectiveness, the history, and the development of homeopathic remedies. I use this book all the time. I write notes in the margins and bookmark essential pages. For anyone curious on this addicting alternative to conventional medicines, I strongly encourage them to start with this book. (And can you beat the price?)

Though it's better to receive help from a real person rather than a website, has been a good guide when I need more information on a specific remedy.

The next resource is Joette Calabrese. I learn so much from her newsletter, blog posts, and various articles she shares with her followers. She has been a great aid to myself and my family for many years. My mom took classes from her several years ago, and now my mom is very knowledgeable of homeopathy as well. She's my first go-to for any questions. I wish everyone was as lucky to have her just a phone call away.

I plan on getting other homeopathic books as the budget allows, so I'll be sure to tell you which ones as I do. If anyone has any suggestions, let me know. :)

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Time for some Tea and Crumpets

Admire the picture

I would like to share with you the highlight of my week: Celestial Seasonings Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride tea. Thanks to Marie, my big sister, my biggest supporter, still yet to be a follower of my blog (ahem), I have been introduced to this wonderful drink. Delight your senses with decadent flavors of vanilla bean, sugar cookie, orange peel, and milk thistle; cuddle up with a book and blanket, and you're ready to face the post-holiday blues and blustery winter chills. What could be better?

Monday, January 03, 2011

Dog Anatomy 101

Remember two weeks ago when I introduced you to Cuzco? Well, we found out last week that the dog is no longer a male. It never was, actually, a male. At the vet's office, it was clarified for us that the unfixed underside of a female puppy causes frequent misconceptions of the gender.


When Ian came home and told me, I couldn't have been more excited. I just thought it was so cute that we had a girl puppy! We swiftly changed the name to Kíla, after an Irish band. So Kíla she was christened, and we happily spread the news. Here she is...a more feminine picture ( ha ha ). 
Would you just look at that little face

Sunday, January 02, 2011

New Years Resolutions

Sometimes I think New Years Resolutions are the silliest thing - do people really keep them longer than a couple months? If it's something mundane like, "I resolve to make my bed immediately every morning," I don't think it's going to last. Yet at the same time, such resolutions show hope for humanity. If people continue to see each year as a new beginning to better themselves, then by all means, make a resolution.

Last year, mine was to look for positive customer service experiences, and bring them to the attention of management. Why? Because when people have a bad experience, they tell 12 people on average. When they have a good one, they only tell 3. (This is a statistic I read in a magazine once.) At my previous jobs, hearing my manager relay a positive comment from a customer was the most encouraging moment of my day. People don't take the time to spread good news. Customers, instead, think, "Well, they better treat me well - that's their job." Yes, that's true. It is their job. It's their job to deal with thousands of people every day. People in good moods, nasty moods, insulting moods, dumb moods. And all the while, the employees are expected to keep a smile on their face and not lose patience. They're not allowed to show frustration or stress. They're expected to be perfect saints from open to close and to treat the customers like saints as well (psh...entitlement). My resolution helped me be a better customer. If I was looking for good experiences, I would try to create them. It has been fun.

This year, my resolution will be more challenging. How can I sum it up? To not use children, especially my child, to talk to other people. It came to me a couple weeks back when I was shopping for some last minute Christmas gifts and overheard a woman "talking to" her grandchild. I put that in quotations because she wasn't talking to her, she was talking through her. She was trying to get the mom to answer questions by asking the little toddler. I've seen it before. The people I used to babysit for did it all the time to get information out of me. When they came home from work, they'd pick up their little munchkin and ask them, "Did you go on a nice walkie today? Did you go outside in the nice sunshine?" As if the six month old was supposed to respond, "Yes, we did." Instead, there would be a slight pause until I answered the question and said, "Yes, we did."

My husband and I do this all the time to each other.

Ian: Little Olive, tell Mommy I'm hungry.
Me: Little Olive, tell Daddy he knows how to cook too.

Ian: Little Olive, tell Mommy to not leave all the lights on in the house.
Me: Little Olive, tell Daddy that if I wasn't afraid of the dark the lights wouldn't have to be on all the time. (Suddenly that becomes Ian's fault.)

Though we do it on purpose and never intend on using our child as the nervous system of communication, I'd like to become more aware of how often I do it and stop. People are capable of talking to each other. They don't need a buffer, especially if that buffer is a little kid.

So the next time I want to give my niece a cookie and don't know if it's okay with the parents, I won't say, "Cindy Lu Hoo, I want to give you this cookie but I don't know if it's okay with your parents" loud enough for them to hear. Instead, I'll turn to them, look at them and say, "Mom and Dad LuHoo, I just want to make sure it's okay with you if I give her this cookie."

Look at that. Works like a charm. :)

Happy 2011, everyone!