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Mar
18
2016

I voted this week in my state primary. This is voting. Florida style…

IMG_3160

I took along my oldest daughter who asked, “Who are you voting for?” I told her, “Hillary Clinton. It’s time for a woman to be President.”

I’m not saying a person should be president based on their sex alone. Not at all. I’m just saying that when someone is smart and experienced (which I believe Hillary is) –  and they also happen to be a woman, then in my mind – it’s time.

Maybe it will be Hillary Clinton’s time.

Maybe it won’t.

But I do know  – that very soon – we need a woman (Democrat or Republican) as the leader of the free world. I want my daughters to see and really know that a girl can grow up in this country and actually become president. That it’s not some crazy unicorn dream. And when it comes to the wage gap, sexism in hiring and other gender inequalities, it could make a difference to have a woman in the White House.

Because I’ve noticed things as my daughters grow and so do they.

Like the day my 3rd grader got her picture taken at school. She watched the boys get up and the photographer asked, “What sport do you play?” and then the photographer would place the appropriate basketball or football or soccer ball in the photo with them. She didn’t hear them ask one girl. Not one.

Why should you assume a boy plays a sport? Why should you assume that a girl doesn’t?

There are incredible female athletes at our elementary school… gymnasts, soccer players, softball players. This sends a message to our girls. We don’t think of you as athletes. We don’t think of you as good at sports.

I still find lines in my kids’ storybooks that use the word “girl” like an insult. You throw like a girl! You know what I do when I see things like that. I take out the fattest black Sharpie I can find and cross it out. And I explain to my kids why I’m doing it.

And it’s the famous #LikeAGirl campaign that recently made us all notice something that we should have all noticed before… the lack of empowering emoji for girls and women.

Unbelievably, if you look at over 1,000 emojis, women are only showcased painting their nails, dancing, or being a bride. Oh wait, there’s also a women getting a haircut and two others that look like they are Playboy bunnies. Yay!!

As Amy Butcher writes in the New York Times, “Where was the lawyer? The accountant? The surgeon? How was there space for both a bento box and a single fried coconut shrimp, and yet women were restricted to a smattering of tired, beauty-centric roles?”

Just think about how often our daughters are having fun with emojis. And as they play, these images are seeping into their developing brains.

Which is why it’s so important to make girls aware of this and take action when you can.

I called the company that took photographs at my daughter’s school. And they agreed that it was sexist and ridiculous to be asking only the boys what sport they played. They promised to not do it again.  I hope it’s true. If not, I hope another mom or dad will stand up the next time. And the next time.

Because our daughters deserve better. Because one of them just might grow up to be President.


Mar
16
2016

My oldest daughter’s apps are killing me. How did this mother perish, they will someday ask? Oh, she just collapsed under the weight of trying to decide which apps were appropriate for her kid. Poor lady. I think it was Snapchat that finally did her in.

snapchat-lenses

Pretty rainbow! Yeah, that’s an example of Snapchat.

Please head on over to Alpha Mom to read the rest of my post on Snapchat. I promise by the end you’ll have a much better idea if this app is a good thing for your kid right now. Snapchat has got some great positives and a few big drawbacks. Take a look.


Mar
11
2016

It’s retro Friday around here, which is an edgy cool way of saying… I’m sharing one of my old posts. Because maybe you never read it or maybe you were drunk when you read it or maybe you just love Josh Lucas as much as I do. And if you’re saying to yourself, who is Josh Lucas than you definitely need to read it. Whatever the case, enjoy. 

computer-typing

Rick sent his wife Kelcey this email…

One day I envision getting a bigger flat screen TV for our living room.
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Kelcey wrote this in response….

One day I envision a world where my children don’t argue and my 3-year-old doesn’t stay up until 10 pm and dishes are magically washed and everyone wears clothes without making them dirty so they can just put them right back in their dressers.
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And Rick responded…

Perfect.
One day I envision that on our giant new television, you will stop recording shows on non-HD channels.
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And Kelcey wrote…

Yeah maybe. And I envision you sitting down with me to watch “Sweet Home Alabama” so we can appreciate the magical chemistry of Josh Lucas and Reese Witherspoon and recite our favorite lines. Here I’ll go first. “What do you want to marry me for anyhow?” “So I can kiss you anytime I want.” Your turn.

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And Rick wrote…

I envision a world where I know what the hell you are talking about.

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And Kelcey wrote…

Or here’s another one… “Look at you, you have a baby… In a bar.” Your turn.

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And Rick wrote…

I envision a world in which you stop doing this.

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And Kelcey wrote…

“I can’t control her, any more than I can control the weather.” Your turn again.

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And Rick wrote…

Seriously, if you stop, I won’t bring up that HD thing again.

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And Kelcey wrote…

You’re not that good at this game. I envision a world where I try to appreciate HD more if you appreciate the artistic talents of Josh Lucas more.

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And Rick wrote…

That’s not going to happen. I envision a world in which we watch the next Superbowl on our new giant TV.

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And Kelcey wrote…

I envision us watching the next Superbowl on our current TV as long as Coach Taylor is coaching and Tim Riggins is playing.

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And Rick wrote…

They aren’t coaching or playing. Mostly because those people don’t actually exist. They are characters on “Friday Night Lights.” I’ve explained this before.

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And Kelcey wrote…

This is why I have trouble getting into football. Do you wish “Party of Five” was still on the air?

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Rick wrote…

No, I don’t.

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Kelcey wrote…

What about “Wings?” That was a great show. Do you miss “Wings?”

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Rick wrote…

No, I don’t.

I gotta go. I’ll talk to you later. Love you.

_____________________________________

Kelcey wrote…

Love you too. But spend some time thinking about “Wings.”

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Rick wrote…

Absolutely. Spend some time thinking about that new TV.

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Kelcey wrote…

Absolutely.


Mar
08
2016

When kids are little, the bedtime routine is almost a mantra. Bath, brush teeth, books, songs, bed.

Well, it’s more wrangle them into the bath. Then you promise you won’t get water in their eyes and then apologize for getting water in their eyes.

They will in turn promise to not splash water out of the tub and then have to explain why there are 3 gallons of water outside the tub.

Summer in bath

Once all this is completed, you try to convince them to actually get out of the bath.

Then you brush their teeth. Of course, the dentist says you should start flossing their teeth. But that seems ridiculous since you barely brushed your teeth as a kid and turned out fine. I mean, except for the cavities.

Then the books. You own so many amazing children’s books. But your kids will want to pick a Dora one, a Barbie one or a superhero one with absolutely no plot. You will promise yourself that you will hide these books tomorrow but of course you will forget which is why you have read, “I am Superman” 37 nights in a row.

Then songs. My 5 year old son has been making me sing the same two Christmas songs for a year and a half. He will not waver. I think a kid at school bet him that he couldn’t give me a nervous breakdown. And he was like – oh I sure can. Give me some time.

After songs comes the goodnight. Then a glass of water. Then goodnight. Then a quick back rub. Then goodnight. Then a mysterious just discovered very painful injury on someone’s finger. I can’t find any first aid ointment so I put strawberry lip balm on it and apparently this miraculously takes away the pain. Then goodnight. Then one more kiss. Then goodnight.

This kind of thing goes on for many years until one day it doesn’t. I don’t remember the day when my older girls (now 9 and 11) started taking their own showers. Or stopped sitting in my lap while we read picture books. Or when I stopped singing them songs. Or having to put strawberry lip balm on imaginary injuries.

But slowly, it just happened.

And what filled the space is probably the most important part of my day with them.

Sometimes I’ll read from chapter books we pick out at the library. Sometimes they can’t stop dancing around the room despite my pleas that it’s time to PLEASE CALM DOWN. Sometimes we play a card game. And sometimes we just talk.

The tween who has nothing to say after school suddenly has all kinds of things to share if it means just staying up a minute or two longer.

This is the time I learn things about them. The time I find out what’s whirling around in those growing brains. What’s worrying them. What’s exciting them. What they forgot to tell me.

And yes, this is also the time that I’m tired. And hungry. And kind of just want to watch my favorite TV shows. But I really try to hang tough and be with them.

Because the chaos of the day is over. And the quiet of the night hasn’t yet begun. And sandwiched in between is a short blip of time when I can connect with these forever changing people that I love so much.

I guess we do still have a bedtime routine. It just changed along with them.


Mar
03
2016

When it comes to potty training, I start with the “do nothing” approach. It’s a great method because it involves no effort from me. The only small downside is that it rarely works.

potty training

I’ve been trying the “do nothing” potty training approach with my 2 1/2 year old son Cash and so far he’s really enjoying still going to the bathroom in his diaper.

I think I overheard him say to another toddler… “A bit bulky, sure. But you just can’t beat the convenience of this thing.”

I was pretty much getting ready to double down on doing absolutely nothing until fate intervened. One night, Cash was standing in the tub when suddenly his brother says, “Cash is peeing in the bathtub!”

I screamed (in a volume usually reserved for an ax murderer or a mosquito entering my house), “STOP PEEING!!!!!”

I grabbed him out of the tub and threw him on the potty. And a few more droplets of pee came out. Into the toilet.

This obviously called for a gigantic celebration. “Cash peed in the potty!!” I yelled as I danced around the house and gave all my children a chocolate rolo. (Why did everyone get one? Because I just couldn’t deal with the – Why does Cash get a rolo for peeing in the toilet when we do it multiple times a day and get nothing?!).

And then something even bigger happened. I know –  what could be bigger than all of this?

Well, while Cash was still sitting on the toilet, he pooped.

More rolos for everyone!!

I’m not sure Cash understood why he was sitting on the toilet or why his mother was throwing candy at him or why everyone was dancing around and applauding.

But he liked it!

Apparently as much as he likes going in his diaper which is what he’s done every moment since the big rolo celebration of February 2016.

But no worries, I’ve been snapped out of my do nothing mentality and gave him a pep talk.

For those ways too lazy to watch a video, here’s the recap…

I give a spirited and passionate speech on the virtues of potty training.

He says “yeah” a bunch of times like he agrees.

He’s clearly on board!

Or you know, maybe totally not.



kelcey kintner


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