In 5th or 6th grade, you easily decide the names of your future children: Ashley, Jake and Ryan. With the names confirmed, you just need to figure how to get Louie to marry you someday even though he has a crush on Tara.
Still 5th or 6th grade: Louie is so not into you. He is so into Tara. Her hair is feathered and awesome so you can understand why. You might have to find a different husband.
Still 5th or 6th grade: You get into a fight with your best friend Stephanie because she wants to name her future daughter Ashley too. But I thought of it first, you insist! She doesn’t care. You decide you can’t be friends and will no longer share an apartment someday in Manhattan and now must live on separate coasts so that you can both have the name Ashley.
Many years later, you get married (not to Louie) and start planning a family.
Unbelievably, your husband actually has opinions when it comes to baby names. He tries to convince you that Jacket is a suitable boys name.
You try to convince him that you can’t handle the pressure of trying to create a kid cool enough to have the name Jacket.
You love the name Georgia but he doesn’t like it because of the traffic in Atlanta.
You named your dog Martini. Maybe a baby Cosmopolitan?
Every name he likes, you don’t.
Every name you like, he doesn’t.
Although neither of you like Cosmopolitan for a boy or girl.
You realize that you could easily name your children if your husband wasn’t involved but you would have no children if your husband wasn’t involved. You consider needle pointing this epiphany on a throw cushion.
Somehow we came up with names. Good ones. I mean, we had one kid’s name we had to change but you try to come up with five names and not have one slight misstep.
Speaking of names, I did a sponsored post a couple months ago about LegacyBuilder. And I wrote, “At first I was a little scared by the name. LegacyBuilder? Is that like an historian super hero?” In the post, I even nicknamed it LB Spice because who doesn’t love a nickname.
(Turns out, it’s not a super hero at all but a great website where you can easily organize your photos, videos and the story of your life in a very user friendly timeline.)
Well, they must have recognized that I am a self proclaimed baby name expert because LegacyBuilder has changed its name! It’s now called One Day.
Even though I think they should have gone with LB Spice, I really like the new name One Day! First of all, the site helps you capture the story of “one day” in your life. Like the day your kids played dodgeball with Little Bites blueberry muffin packages in your living room and you caught it all on video.
Or how “one day” your 4-year-old son can look back at photos you’ve stored on the website and think, why did I constantly wear a Home Depot apron?
(And his name isn’t even Joey.)
Finally, the new name also gives me fond memories of the lovely Valerie Bertinelli and building superintendent Schneider as we all try to live one day at a time.
If you want to try out One Day, sign up with code MAMABIRD3 to get a free lifetime premium account, up to 25GB.
This is a sponsored post for One day. All ideas are my own.
You will spend way too much money despite saying, “No, we are not getting the action packed, triple extra flavor blasted assorted cheese puffs with infused cheddar crystals” many times.
You will say no to things that will somehow end up in your cart anyway but you won’t notice until you get home.
Your kids will start giving each other piggy back rides and run up and down the aisles singing Frozen songs. You will have no ability to stop them.
You will at some point yell to one of your children, “Get off the floor!!”
They will pick out 14 avocados instead of 2.
They will pick out 6 bruised peaches.
Because you can’t focus at all, you will forget the one thing you actually needed.
You will feed your one-year-old deli ham samples and Pirate’s Booty and call it dinner. You will feel no shame or guilt because that seems pretty well balanced.
Someone will have to poop.
Later on, someone else will have to pee.
More than one person will ask, “Are they all yours?” You will say no. You are just the nanny. They will remark how you resemble a couple of the children. You will say, “That’s why they hired me!”
At some point, you will realize there are 7 boxes of cereal in your cart. You don’t have 7 kids. How are there 7 boxes?!
At check-out, your son will drop a package of baked beans that will spill all over the floor. You will not have the will or the ability to get another one because it’s 8 aisles away. You will consider buying what’s left in the baked beans container. But the check-out woman will take pity and send someone to get you a new one. You will repay her kindness by cleaning up the beans.
You will seriously applaud yourself for remembering the reusable bags.
And a high five for not losing any of the children in the store. At least not for an extended amount of time. After all, you want to give them space to explore their culinary and frozen food passions.
A woman will compliment you on your spirited, gorgeous children and share that hers are coming home from college soon.
You will cherish every wild moment because you know someday all of yours will be away too.
Every time I look at this picture I get agitated…
Because it’s not just a horse. It actually represents a long year for my 9 year old daughter in art class. Yes, art class.
My passionate, creative daughter hated art this year because her art teacher never quite understood that art should inspire and excite.
Instead, this teacher was intent on making the kids sit with their hands folded in front them, draw lines as perfect as possible and never think or draw outside the box.
They never experimented with clay or glued bits of different materials to see what gorgeous, unusual creation might develop. Class was structured and tedious. This teacher even painted on children’s own paintings to make them more acceptable, more perfect. At the school’s art show, all the art looked almost identical.
I’m saddened for all the children she did not inspire this year. I’m sure if there is a future famous artist in one of her classes, their passion will persevere. But what about the kid who is struggling, who may have discovered a creative outlet if only she had freed that child’s spirit.
My husband and I even met with her and the vice principal. It was civil. It was polite. And she never got what we were trying to say. But the students have won lots of drawing awards, she pointed out. I’m not sure that’s the purpose of elementary school art, I pointed out.
I told my daughter that this was a lesson is learning to deal with difficult people. That she would meet and have to work with lots of people in her hopefully very long life that weren’t her favorite and it was necessary to learn the skills to get along with them.
Thankfully, my daughter did love her classroom teacher. She was lovely, kind and warm. The kids did projects on the planets and even got to create their own aliens out of recycled materials. There were no rules. Or perfect aliens. Just creative freedom.
This was Dylan’s alien from Neptune…
Dylan’s alien looks like… umm….
Two microphones. Yeah, something like that.
The horse has been put away (per my daughter’s request). But the alien is proudly displayed in our living room. It’s sparkly, bright and an original. Just like my girl.
mama bird notes:
I’m once again working with Luvs and the new season of ABC’s “Bet On Your Baby.” On this entertaining show, families see just how well they know their toddlers (ages 2 to 3 1/2) by predicting their child’s next move in the hopes of earning prize money toward their college fund. A college fund? Damn, I need to get on this show.
I will be live tweeting during “Bet On Your Baby” this Saturday night @ 8pm EST. Please watch along with me and join the conversation! You can find me @mamabirddiaries or look for the hashtag #LuvsBOYB
When I had my first baby almost a decade ago (which is weird because I would swear I was in college a decade ago but I’ve never been good with estimating time), I had a lot of questions. I only knew a few friends who had babies so I would call them up and ask them things like, “When your baby gets too big for the changing table, do they sell bigger changing tables?”
I mean, what kind of question is that? By the way, in case there is one other new mom wondering this and I’m guessing there can’t be anymore, the answer is no. They don’t sell bigger changing tables. Just make it work.
Another question I had as a new parent was – “What do I do with my hair?”
One of the most shocking things about becoming a mom is that all that free time you used to have to relax, watch old episodes of Saved by the Bell and organize your sock drawer into shades of the rainbow is gone. Just gone. If you have time to take a 3 minute shower and put on a shirt that’s not on backwards, then you are in good shape.
But styling hair can be an issue. You know, if you don’t want it to look like this…
(I’m not sure exactly what’s going on there.)
I have very thick, somewhat coarse hair that expands rapidly when exposed to humidity. I used to spend about a half hour on my hair. First the washing, then the blowdrying, then the flattening. So when I had a baby, all my “hair prep” time was gobbled up by “figure out what this baby wants.”
So I called my girlfriend Kerry and asked – “What do I do with my hair?”
And she said, “Just slick it back.”
And that’s exactly what I did…
This hair style takes about one minute and it has the added bonus that someone might mistake you for a ballerina. (Full disclaimer: no one has ever asked me if I’m a ballerina.)
Now because I have very dry hair, I can go a few days between washings, which leads me to post baby hairstyle #2…
See that little braid? It’s nod to Princess Leia without going over the top. And it’s very quick and easy.
Then you put on sunglasses, lipgloss and you are ready to go!
Of course, you aren’t going anywhere just yet because you still have to pack the diaper bag and your baby just pooped again and is he hungry? You can’t really tell. And oh my gosh, you would love to just shut your eyes for one minute. But he’s crying again. And maybe you’ll change him, then try feeding him and then you’re totally getting out for some fresh air. If you can remember how to open that stroller. Which you probably can’t.
See? The hair was the easy part.
1. When you go out as a couple to restaurants, the waiter smiles at your husband and says, “It’s so nice that you take your mother out for dinner.”
2. Your preschooler asks why your neck looks like an owl’s nest. This same child has never noticed that daddy has a neck resembling anything bird related.
3. Your spouse does not seem to acquire wrinkles no matter how stressed out you try to make him.
4. You look more like Michael Douglas. He looks more like Catherine Zeta-Jones.
5. You will drop money on face creams that blast wrinkles! And defy age! Your spouse hasn’t used face cream since — well, ever.
6. You’re constantly avoiding florescent lights and searching for dim lighting situations. He has never once thought about lighting except for that time you were both looking at different options for recessed lighting for your family room and he passed out from a combination of fatigue and boredom.
7. He has never taken a bad driver’s license photo. Even when he was hungover. After 4 days at Mardi Gras.
8. His grey hairs look like glistening highlights that magnify his handsomeness. Yours look like grey hairs.
9. At carnivals, they can never guess his age. He has a carny trophy shelf of stuffed animals to prove it. You no longer frequent carnivals.
10. A neighbor compliments you on being named Cougar of the Cul-de-sac despite the fact that your spouse is older than you.
mama bird notes:
What REALLY is the secret to the fountain of youth? Liking the Mama Bird Diaries on Facebook of course! Please do it today. Click here.
Is your baby overworked and exhausted? Maybe he or she needs a spa visit! Check out my piece on Lifetime Moms.