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Feb
11
2008

When I was single I used to dread Valentine’s Day. Did I really need a national holiday to remind me that I was completely unattached?

It’s cruel. Oh yes, there is love all around. Love. Love. Love. Oh, but none for you.

All those red petals and baby’s breath delivered to the cubicle next to you. So darn close. Maybe I’ll scoot those roses over to my desk, just for a few minutes, since she’s off at lunch. I heard she was cheating on her boyfriend anyway. Oh, they smell sooo good. Crap. She’s coming back. Quick. Quick. Put the flowers back on her desk. My god, she’ll think I’m a crazy person.

The holiday wouldn’t be so depressing in the middle of let’s say… June. Sunny, warm, tank tops and flip flops June. But dreary February?

Of course, boyfriends along the way and my husband changed all that. I, too, could finally go out and pay for inflated price-fixed Valentine’s Day dinners. I suddenly had a dozen long stem roses on my desk and creamy, caloric Godiva chocolates tied with fat, crisp ribbon. And it felt sugary and sweet and nice.

But suddenly this year, it all feels ridiculously predictable. Stale. Manufactured.

Just not feeling the love for the holiday.

I love and adore my husband. But there is no denying that our first kiss is long gone. The frenetic energy and heady rush of new love has transformed into the warm buzz and constant chaos of our family unit.

Roses on February 14th feels like fresh love.

A bunch of gorgeous flowers from my favorite shop on some random day feels more like us. It feels like deep love, commitment, respect, laughter and a life intertwined. I’ll take it.

Oh wait, I want one more thing.

How about a rich, creamy nutella crepe.

And a fab BCBG top too.

And also 10 hours of straight sleep.

And maybe if Rick promised to never again eat chicken skin.

And a guarantee I’ll look as good as Tina Turner when I’m 68.

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Did you see her perform at the Grammy’s? Wowie Zowie. Beyonce has nothing on her.

Yes, that’s about it. The perfect celebration of our eternal love. A little odd that chicken skin and Tina Turner would play a role. But love is a mystery, my friends.

By the way, I know many of you are anxiously waiting to see my LA Mac genius techno hero Wass, all tucked in and ready for bed. As I suspected, Wass is indeed a sleep sack maniac. He supplied the picture to prove it.

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I knew there was a reason he and Dylan are such tight buds.

Last night, 3 year-old Dylan woke up in the middle of the night sobbing because she couldn’t scratch her tushee while wearing 1 year-old Summer’s sleep sack. I get it. Who wants an itchy butt?

The solution seems obvious, right? Ditch the sack. But no. I unzipped her, scratched her tush and then she demanded to be zipped back up.

Hmm… I wonder if Wass had the same issue last night.


Feb
09
2008

Hard drive of my computer: Dead.

Cell phone dropped in toilet: Dead.

Replacement phone: Was working. Now not so much.

Double replacement phone: Still in action. That’s all I’m going to say. Please don’t jinx it.

I’ve been stalking our LA friend, Wass, because he’s a big Mac genius and I’ve needed immediate assistance with my computer. The poor guy spent so much time trying to fix my technical problems that I think he memorized my last post. When I told him he was my techno hero, he modestly proclaimed to only be a sleep sack maniac. Photo of Wass in his sleep sack, hopefully coming soon.

I get so tense when technology fails me. Do you think our great great great grandparents flipped out over communication breakdowns?

Ophelia: Phillip, I just can’t take it anymore. This feathered quill pen has broken again! It’s making me crazy. Why didn’t we spend the extra 3 cents on the goose feather pen? Why must you be such a cheap bastard and settle for the turkey feathers? They just never last.

Phillip: Honey, you’re right.

Ophelia: And the pony express has been atrocious this year. My sister didn’t get my letter for three months. THREE months. My god, she thought the plague had gotten me.

Phillip: Honey, I will fix it. I promise. The pen. The ponies. We’ll fix all of it.

It must have bummed them out too. Perhaps you just noticed that I was not a history major in college.

Speaking of LA (well, I was speaking of it like six paragraphs ago), Rick’s best friend surprised us and flew into town from California for a quick visit (what a cool jet setter). We decided to host an impromptu brunch (ok, we were pressured into but still happy to do it).

Suddenly, I was panicked about the state of our apartment.

So I went on a hiding binge, stuffing crap into drawers and pushing junk into cabinets. You’ll notice this crafty, secret spot I found next to the bed to hide a few boxes.

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Of course, when I do this sort of thing for company, I actually become convinced that I really did organize and clean out everything. Until my husband happens to mention that he REALLY can’t get into his side of the bed.

Damn. Why does he have to be such a pansy?! The apartment looks so good.

kids.jpgSo everyone showed up and played nicely. That would be six girls (between the ages of 11 months and 4 1/2).

No girls gone wild or girls behaving badly or anything. A real polite bunch.

For the first two hours, Dylan didn’t want anyone there or anyone playing with her toys or anyone talking to her parents. After that, I think she had a pretty good time.

So did the rest of us. And if anyone noticed the boxes hidden next to the bed, they were too courteous to mention it.

And speaking of snowsuits – wait, I haven’t mentioned snowsuits? Well, I meant to. Here’s a shot of 3 1/2 Dylan sleeping in her 1 year-old sister’s snowsuit.

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I don’t know about you but nothing lulls me into a deep slumber quicker than an extra snug down parka.

mama bird notes

MP is the lucky birdie to win our super fab giveaway! Thank you to all the amazing companies who participated:

Posh Squeaks baby
Pottery Barn Kids
EmmaLu Designs
Smart Mom

Contributing mama Daphne Biener is back with her heroic efforts to save a life (it’s a bird but still). Click on “contributing mamas” to read more.

The results of our mama poll are in…

What do you and your spouse fight about the most? 19% of you argue about house keeping. 16% fight about in laws. Another 16% say it’s the money issue. 13% argue over child rearing, 9% about work and another 6% about sex. 3% of you do battle over your housing situation. 12% say you and your spouse fight about everything (too tired and too cranky). Finally, 6% of you checked the “other” box. Of course, now I’m dying to know what on earth you argue about.

Check out our latest poll. How far would you go for a sniffles free winter with your kids? Click on, “your mama says what?” and give us the mama dish.


Feb
06
2008

My 3 1/2 year old daughter Dylan is nutty when it… Oh, sorry, hold on. I need to shut off the air conditioner. It’s on high and I’m freezing my tush off in here. Dylan likes to turn it on and shrieks when I start muttering about winter, goosebumps, energy bills and the environment. Maybe she is going through menopause. Too young, right? I thought so.

So anyway, she is a bit loopy when it comes to clothing. Her fave activity right now is wearing 14 month-old Summer’s clothes. Yesterday, on top of her own outfit, Dylan wore 4 additional layers, all size 12 – 18 months. Um, I think I’m starting to understand why she wants the air on.

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Poor Summer. Not only does she get ALL hand-me-downs. But now she can’t even WEAR them.

Of course, Dylan becomes completely frustrated trying to get the tiny frocks on her body. And arguments like, “But honey, these are clothes for a 1 year-old. They don’t fit. That’s why it’s hard to get them on!” seem to have absolutely no merit.

So she grunts and pulls and squeezes her way into the miniature clothing, one layer at a time. And of course, she cries when we have to peel it all off for bath time.

Night time is the same. Because I have this paranoia about Summer using a real blanket (suffocation hazard or something), she sleeps in these blanket sacks. Tell me I’m not the only crazy one who does this. I just zip her up and she’s tucked in for the night. It’s like a little fleece sandwich bag for babies, with openings for the arms and everything.

But for the past few nights, Dylan has taken to wearing Summer’s sleep sacks.

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Try taking a 3 1/2 year-old to the potty wearing one of these. Really. It’s ridiculous.

Speaking of getting up, Rick took Dylan to the potty around 4 am last night. He waits a little bit, then asks if she’s finished because at 4 am he’s dying to get back in bed. Twice, he asks. Finally Dylan says, “Daddy, sometimes it takes a while to go poopy.”

Hard to argue with that.

So I’ve been surfing around the internet and have learned that there are quite a number of very organized moms like this one and this one planning a weekly family dinner menu. With recipes. Damn. That’s so impressive. Apparently that’s what they’re doing while I’m trying on old prom dresses.

In case, you thought that perhaps I mapped out the week’s meals, here’s a picture of my daughter pretending to order from the sushi menu.

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Hmm… I guess she’s seen me do that a few times.

Oh and have I mentioned that ALL Summer says is Elmo now. Really. All day. Elmo. Elmo. Elmo. Elmo. See, that got annoying and I only typed it four times.

She likes to find that crazy redhead with the matted hair in books and point him out to me. I nod my head and say, “Oh that’s Elmo. Thanks, hon. I wasn’t sure exactly who he was. But now he looks familiar.”

And if I happen to even walk anywhere near our tv set, she starts clapping madly with excitement and shouting for him, thinking she’s about to get her fix. What is it about that guy? Cute? Yes. Rock star legend? I just don’t see it. I guess I’m not in his demographic.

But I’m so zen these days. I simply won’t stress for one moment that my toddler is wearing baby clothes, my baby is crazy obsessed with a caffeinated muppet and I haven’t the slightest idea what I’m feeding them tomorrow.

Finally, because many of you asked, Brad Pitt is well, um, pretty average.

mama bird notes

Leave it to our beauty gal Alex to find an organic skincare line that comes with its own eco friendly packaging. Click on drooling over this to read more.

And you just must enter our mama bird giveaway this week. One lucky reader will win the following…

An adorable “Made With Love” Footie Pajamas by Marie Chantal. $60 value. Beautifully made with the finest pima cotton fabric. Provided by the luxurious Posh Squeaks baby boutique.

giveaway-made-with-love-footie-pajama.jpg

The First Year Frame by Pottery Barn Kids. This beautiful wooden frame lets you you capture every detail, month by month, of that amazing first year. $44

This GENIUS waterproof, removable car seat cover from EmmaLu Designs. I mean, why don’t I have brilliant ideas like this? Such a cute way to keep your child’s car seat stain free. $70 value.

giveaway-emmalu-carseat-cover.jpg

And finally, something from another clever mama. Teething bling by Smart Mom. A cute teething toy that you wear around your neck. Pretty and practical. Plus, totally safe for your baby. The silicone material is non-toxic, latex-free and even dishwasher-friendly. $20

giveaway-smart-mom.jpg

To enter this mama bird giveaway, you must be subscribed (just enter your email address below the menu bar and follow the directions from there or subscribe in a reader) and leave a comment on the mama bird diaries this week. No pressure to be extra sassy and smart. You can write, “I want free stuff.” Good luck. I’ll announce the winner at the end of the week.


Feb
04
2008

It seems like everyone has a little getaway place outside the city these days. You know, a small cottage in the Hamptons or a house in the country. So Rick and I finally decided to rent a little something upstate (near the Bronx). And it’s modest (one room). Without much of a view (no windows). Oh fine. It’s a storage bin.

You see my mother is moving out of my childhood home in Connecticut and apparently she doesn’t want to take all my crap keepsakes with her. Her loss. Because I unearthed some really valuable stuff in her attic.

My super rad jean jacket (with way cool buttons like, “Save the Alligator. Eat a Preppy). I can’t even remember why I stopped wearing this bad boy.

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My junior prom dress. 1987 baby. 1987.

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Will it fit?

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Yes, it fits! No, I can’t breathe. Do you think my date is wearing his tux, with the matching purple iridescent bow tie and cumber-bun, right now?! God, I hope so.

Awesome records like Men at Work and Olivia Newton-John’s, “Let’s Get Physical.”

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Nude pictures of Brad Pitt in Playgirl. I don’t know exactly how I acquired this but I’m sure I went to great efforts. I think it’s actually worth something now because it got pulled from the newsstands after a lawsuit. That Brad, he’s my shy guy.

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And my class photo from 5th grade. I just happened to be sitting next to the love of my life (well, at least in 1981): Louie Permanente. Isn’t he dreamy?! That’s me. With the cool Dorothy Hamill cut. I cropped everyone else out of this picture. In my world, it’s just Louie and me.

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And here is that super sweet Tara Moss. Louie LOVED Tara. I’m still not quite over it. Damn. She’s all happy, with her perfect, feathered hair.

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And I stumbled on another photo. This one is from college. Yes, that’s contributing mama Daphne Biener. Of course, I got her permission first. Ok, maybe I didn’t.

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Just goes to show, you can never have too much bang.

Rick ACTUALLY thought I might toss some of this stuff out. Come on. As if!

So we schlepped it all here…

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I kind of feel all grown up now: a husband, 2 kids, a storage unit. Where did all the time go? Louie is probably thinking the same thing.

mama bird notes

We have another giveaway this week! Cheers to that. Fab stuff for your little one or great baby gifts! We are giving away…

An adorable “Made With Love” Footie Pajamas by Marie Chantal. $60 value. Beautifully made with the finest pima cotton fabric. Provided by the luxurious Posh Squeaks baby boutique.

giveaway-made-with-love-footie-pajama.jpg

The First Year Frame by Pottery Barn Kids. This beautiful wooden frame lets you you capture every detail, month by month, of that amazing first year. $44

This GENIUS waterproof, removable car seat cover from EmmaLu Designs. I mean, why don’t I have brilliant ideas like this? My car seat is so gross. Such a cute way to keep your child’s car seat stain free. $70 value.

giveaway-emmalu-carseat-cover.jpg

And finally, something from another clever mama. Teething bling by Smart Mom. My 1 year-old has broken THREE necklaces of mine. Here is the answer. A cute teething toy that you wear around your neck. Pretty and practical. Plus, totally safe for your baby. The silicone material is non-toxic, latex-free and even dishwasher-friendly. $20

giveaway-smart-mom.jpg

To enter this mama bird giveaway, you must be subscribed (just enter your email address below the menu bar and follow the directions from there) and leave a comment on the mama bird diaries this week. No pressure to be extra sassy and smart. You can write, “I want free stuff.” Good luck. I’ll announce the winner at the end of the week.


Feb
01
2008

A little inspiration can really turn a glum mum around. For the past couple days, I’ve been on a mission to be a more zen mama (inspired by this from Oh, The Joys). I must say that I’ve actually achieved heroic calmness (partially brought on by cold medicine but still) during irrational toddler drama. Now, of course, all good things can’t last forever.

After withstanding two ridiculously long tantrums with the patience and tranquility of a sleeping monk, I finally, ever-so-briefly, snapped after Dylan cried for 15 minutes straight about that evil rain cover (again!) that was (gasp!) keeping her and her little sister dry during a downpour.

I quickly jolted back to a serene state but couldn’t help feeling a bit disappointed in myself. I’m relaunching my zen quest first thing tomorrow morning.

I’m also invigorated by contributing mama Daphne Biener who is completely juiced about Super Tuesday. Click here and feel her energy. She even uses the word, “jazzed.” Twice. Now that girl is inspired.

After a year of relentless campaigning, I had sort of tired of ALL the political candidates. But damn that Daphne, she actually made me care again. She is crushin’ on Obama but whoever makes your heart zing, I hope you’ll get out and vote.

Yes, I really did go from political apathy to engaged peer pressuring in just minutes.

I’ll tell you what I’m never quite jazzed about. A trip to the dentist.

After 2 c-sections and 3 other abdominal surgeries, it’s still a routine teeth cleaning that makes me cringe. Completely irrational and dumbfounding, I admit. But something about all that shrilling and scraping and gum prodding just makes me squirm. There is no iPod or fun patient/dental hygienist banter capable of drowning it out.

And there it sat on the calendar this week: a 2 pm appointment, 2 months overdue.

The dental hygienist looks so sweet. So darling. Like she lives next door and bakes you oatmeal cookies and collects your newspapers when you leave town.

Dental Hygienist: Are you flossing?

Me: Umm… well, occasionally. I mean, I used to regularly. Now, not as much. Maybe a few times a week. (A few times a week = Not at all)

Dental Hygienist: Your gums are bleeding a lot. Do you use an electric toothbrush?

Me: (pause) Yes. Yes, I do.

Dental Hygienist: Well, that’s good-

Me: (Go me. Go me. Go me. Doing the electric. Doing the electric. Watch me brush. I’m groovin’. I’m brushin’. It’s my birthday!)

Dental Hygienist: But you aren’t using it correctly. You are missing spots.

Me: Oh.

Dental Hygienist: I’ll show you how to brush when I’m done cleaning your teeth.

Me: That would be great. (That would be great = I’m not a idiot you know. I’m 37 years-old. Don’t you think I know how to brush my teeth by now?! I mean, I have a masters. From an ivy league institution. Well, actually, tooth brushing was not covered in any of my classes. And if you really want to know, I only brush for about 30 seconds. Maybe 20. Yeah, you better show me what I’m doing wrong).

Dental Hygienist: So I assume you’re refusing x-rays again?

Me: Yes. I think the radiation is too dangerous. Just seems unnecessary when I never have any problems with my teeth.

Dental Hygienist: Well, you know the risks. Instead of filling a cavity, we could end up doing a root canal or worse.

Me: Of course. I understand. (Worse? What’s this worse thing? I’m not asking. Oh god, I AM an idiot).

More scraping, sanding, buffing, picking, pushing and drooling.

Real time: 29 minutes. Perceived time: 7 hours.

Dental Hygientist: Ok, We’re done here. You had a lot of plaque. Come back in 4 months.

Me: 4 months? I thought it’s every 6 months?

Dental Hygienist: Well, you’re 2 months overdue. And you had a lot of plaque. You should come back in 4 months.

Me: Ok (This makes no sense. My teeth are clean. 6 months is good. I pay out of pocket for this. This lady is crazy if she thinks she’ll see me in 4 months).

Exit Dental Hygienist.

Enter Dentist. She does a check of my teeth.

Dentist: Your teeth look great, Kelcey – as always. Your gums might just be bleeding a bit from your hormones. You just stopped nursing, right? Totally normal. You’re all set. See you soon. In a flash, she and her pearly white lovely essence are gone.

Me: Thanks. (Oh my gosh, I love her. She is the nicest dentist I’ve ever known. I will floss. I will. I will do it for the extra nice dentist. Not the seems-nice-but-is-really-judgemental-and-super-critical-dental-hygienist. I will even come back in 4 months 5 months. 6 months at the absolute latest.)

mama bird notes

Stephanie (aka stephmod) is the winner of the super stylin’ Mutsy Spider Stroller!! Please know that I wanted to give a new stroller to each and every one of you. More giveaways to come!

NYC mamas, check out drooling over this for a green Valentine’s day.



kelcey kintner


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