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Last night I was lying next to my husband in bed. Before drifting off, I said, “Honey, you smell like a big piece of barbeque chicken.”

I like to say nice things like that because it really pumps up his ego.

And he really did smell like chicken. Earlier that evening, he grilled an awesome dinner on our balcony. And just so you know, here in Manhattan, it’s sort of illegal to have a gas grill on your balcony. So, don’t rat us out. As far as I’m concerned, that’s just a big ass urban stroller under that tarp. What?! Your stroller doesn’t come with grilled corn and artichokes as side dishes? Well, maybe you just bought the wrong stroller.

Today, my husband smells much less like chicken. His co-workers and I are grateful.

Meanwhile, Miss 3 1/2 year-old Dylan continues to express her fashionista ways, this time in the undergarment department.

I came home from running errands to find Dylan completely naked except for my Spanx-like tummy sucking, support underwear on. She had them tugged up high, like a strapless one piece bathing suit.

Now I really like my babysitter. She’s totally cool and great with the kids. But I just wasn’t ready to show her my little secret for looking svelte and sleek when I go out at night. I mean, I don’t even want my chicken guy seeing those knickers up close.

Me: Kira, I’m so sorry you have to see my daughter prancing around in my underwear. Ah… especially those. I guess she dug them out of my drawer.

Kira, the babysitter: Oh you should have seen it when she had on your black bra and heels too!

Me: (smiling nervously) Really? (nervous laughter) Well, let me go see if I can find that bra.

Does parenthood take away every shred of privacy?

Lately, Dylan also has a very particular way she likes to wear her hair. I like it like this…

See the way her hair is swept nicely to the side? Doesn’t she look sweet? Like a little Hello Kitty pink angel.

Ok, this is the way she prefers it.

She likes to jam the barrett in the middle of her forehead. And if I try to fix it, she explains impatiently, “But I like to wear it in the middle!”

Well, ok. Do whatever you want. I certainly don’t want to be one of those crazy stage moms who is constantly trying to coif and preen her daughter. That is so not me. I believe children should be able to express their own individual spirit. That is how you raise healthy, independent, happy kids.

But maybe we could move that barrett just ever so slightly to the side? Still no? Oh, alright.

mama bird notes

If you want to check out a couple other things I’ve written lately, visit NYC Moms Blog for a post called The Dark Side. Or visit Notes on a Party for ideas on green birthday gifts.

Or forget me. Check out Contributing mamas Daphne Biener’s post here. She’s got all the answers in The Book. You never heard of THE Book? Well, neither had I.

We’ve got a cool giveaway this week. Ever feel guilty about throwing your kid’s art away or just don’t know what to do with it all? A couple savvy mamas came up with a high tech solution. They created The ART:archives.

Here’s how it works. You send them your child’s artwork (plus a recent photo, writing samples if they are older, and even their current height, weight, favorite book, etc). They take professional photographs of all the artwork and create a custom digital presentation, set to classical music, on DVD. One DVD and you’ve preserved your kid’s creations!

One lucky mama bird reader will win a DVD presentation of their child’s artwork, a backup copy, a CD of the digital photos and a CD you can synch with your iPhone and/or iPod for a digital slideshow. It’s all a $350 value.

Just leave a comment this week on the mama bird diaries and forward a post to a friend (it can be any mama bird post and your friend will never be spammed. Girlfriend’s honor). Just click on the “send to a friend” box below. Good luck mamas!

32 Responses to dylan’s fashion files

  • Valerie says:

    So the only thing worse than your daughter prancing around in your undergarments is…your son doing so. Landon puts his arms through the bra straps and giggles and says "I'm a Mommy."

    Oh, and I am drowning in kid artwork, so I would love to win the prize!

  • magpie says:

    I've given up on trying to do the kid's hair. If I can get a brush through it on the way out the door, I feel like I've scored.

    We lived in an apartment with a tiny little balcony – and we grilled, we grew tomatoes and herbs, we ate and drank out there every night in the summer. It was heaven. (We used charcoal, not gas, though.)

  • holli says:

    nasty – I smell like mexican food right now. I cracked up reading this post because I have totally broken the law in the grill area. I had no idea what that sticker that had a picture of a grill on fire with a big red circle around it meant. My mom came to visit once and I bought this little grill – but I couldn't put the side flaps on (this was when I was still in college and dead ass broke – it was so cheap). It created this huge draft through the sides and the flames went up to the balcony above me. I couldn't stop them – we were holding spatulas and metal spoons on either side and screaming.. and it sucked because I lived over a bar with the fire chief on the patio across from me. my steak was burned like a piece of charcoal in like 15 seconds – it was INSANE!!

    That art thing is cool! Except I don't have an iphone.

  • I cannot imagine life without our Weber grill!! Also, I'm wondering if you should be a little worried about the babysitter encouraging your kid to dress in your lingerie (Just kidding! Man, it kills me when moms come up with such amazing ideas that I could have thought of but didn't take the initiative to do anything about. Very cool.

  • Rhea says:

    You've got it, parenthood takes away ALL privacy. Those kids are tickin' time bombs just waiting to explode with a secret or embarrassing situation. We love them anyway.

    Love your daughter's barrett in the middle of her forehead. haha Fabulous!

    I thought everyone kept their strollers under tarps on their balcony.

    I have my children's artwork framed and on our walls. You don't do that?

    I wish my hubby smelled like BBQ chicken. He's a lawyer, so he smells more like…well, that would change the PG rating of this post. hehe

  • OMG (wait, did I just type OMG??) that line, "I mean, I don’t even want my chicken guy seeing those knickers up close." made me snort tea all over my desk. Thanks for the laugh – I needed it tonight. Hello Kitty rocks-

  • Tully's Mama says:

    your chicken guy comment is priceless. Tully thankfully prefers her Elmo panties to mama's Spanx collection. I do not use the term "collection" lightly. I have more of those than some women have shoes. Remember how I gave up celebrity gossip for lent this year? In 2007, it was Spanx. Pinky swear.

  • Jennifer H says:

    I hear those, uh, strollers are very popular in Europe.

    My husband never smells like chicken–he's one of the few American men who do not know how to use a grill.

  • What I want to know? If you are tiny enough for your child to be able to wear your spanx (without them falling down), why do you NEED the spanx?

    That's quite a compliment for your man, too… bbq chicken! Love it!!

  • Madmad says:

    The undie/bra thing reminded me of a story: my son received toy handcuffs as part of a birthday gift. They broke, and my husband took them and put them on his bureau to try to fix (you know: someday). Well, in the meantime, the cleaning lady came, folded them up very nicely, and put them in his nightstand drawer. I don’t know if I will ever live that down.

  • Jessi says:

    My daughter is 7 (going on 13) and she still doesn't like the way I want her hair fixed. We went through 2 years of the barrette in the middle just like Dylan's.

    What? You're not supposed to grill? Crazy.

    I'm having flashbacks of my kids wearing my bra – cracks me up!

  • Robyn says:

    Count yourself lucky. One of the things I miss about not having a girl is the ability to do some hair. And Bear had beautiful, curly locks (that I had to cut because one too many strangers asked my husband if Bear was a girl). His hair would've been perfect for a little barrette…

  • The Mom Bomb says:

    My son's into picking out his own clothes now. Sometimes it's stripes with plaid. I tried to explain the concept of matching to him, and he's like "You can match. I don't want to." Fine. Be that way.

  • Queen Goob says:

    My daughter has graduated from pulling her hair back in a ponytail like mommy to wearing it so that in covers half of her face. I'm waiting for her to breakout in a Chewbacca growl every time we have a conversation….oh wait, I mean every time I talk to her and she pretends to listen.

  • Julie says:

    I beg Ella to wear ponytails and a dress everyday. I can't take it. You are lucky because Dylan wears dresses unlike Ella who is back to her black and white dragon shirt everyday.

  • misty says:

    i'd forego grilling for Manhattan.


    Lucky, girl!

    And my daughter (9) does the barrette in the middle too. She also wears her clothes in ways that look utterly ridiculous, while she believes the entire package makes her "Rock star"…

  • Theresa says:

    I'd be happy if I could get my middle child to wear a barrette at all, even in the middle. Half the time I don't know if I'm talking to her front or her back. 🙂

  • That's funny- BBQ chicken. I though my fiance smelled like an italian hoagie (sub, I am from philly) the other night when he got done a baseball game. I don't think they smell great, so I suggested a shower.

    Where do you buy spanx, I want to try them out when I go wedding dress shopping?

  • Pam F. says:

    It is nice to know that Rick is making the Folbaum men proud with his grilling prowess!

    I am kicking myself for not coming up with the ARTArchive thing!!!! Love it! I definately need that to corral 7 years of Jake's masterpieces.

  • mp says:

    I remember barrett fights w/ my mom..she wanted it up higher, I wanted it at ear level…I liked it looking like a forced mullet..I was a strange child.

  • Holly says:

    Maybe she's going punk?

    Before we were married and I was a waitress, my husband used to tell me I smelled like a pizza. (I worked in an Italian restaurant.) Good thing he *loved* pizza….

  • Michelle says:

    COme on! I was scrolling down for the picture of Dylan in the funderware! (my husband refers to mine as the full butted underware!)

  • sara says:

    I LOVE Dylans hair like that….and I love even more that you tried to buy the display balls at the container store. Awesome stuff!

  • Daphne says:

    Dave used to come home and find my panties and bras in random places around the house. I tried to tell him about the wild parties that went on here after he left for work, but the girls prancing randomly around in my thongs gave me away…

  • madge says:

    yes! parenthood takes away every last remaining shred of privacy or modesty or pride or dignity or sanity that you have ever had. it is all over baby, all over.

  • Sally says:

    I'm biased because I'm in marketing at Maidenform, but I recommend that you buy Flexees at Macy's or Control It! at Kohl's or both at JC Penney. Both brands are amazing. They suck you in comfortably, they DON't run, and they're cute and affordable. I'm in marketing but I don't troll around blogs in order to pitch my brands. I'm an ardent fan of the Site, and you're all talking shapewear. I had to chime in.

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