10/29/2008

33 flavors and then some Parenting

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Today I turn thirty-three. Thirty. Three. I’m boggled. I’m blinded.

I’m not sure how I feel about that.

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Most average days I just get by. I email, I make lunches, I make dinner, I do the dishes, I tuck covers in over tiny people. I try to remember a life before this and I can’t.

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Quite Frankly, I’m sick of it

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Popularity. Fame. Money. Drama.

I think Mom101 said it best, “We don’t have to be ashamed about what we do or why we do it. Whether we blog for money or friendship or approval or attention or magical beans. I said it in the first Momosphere panel and I meant it: It’s all good.”

The hate blogs, the jealousy, the gossip; It’s a bi-product of mixing fame, money and popularity in a tiny tiny space called Your Computer. We’re exposed. We’re sharing. We’re being “honest” except we’re not.

I can not tell you how much it means to me to know that really great writers with great sites know who I am and are just as amazing in person as in their blogs. But this does not bring me fame. It does not bring me money. It does not bring me popularity.

It brings me community.

6/1/2008

Appropriate and not-so-much: Names we call our children Parenting

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I taught preschool for a few years. Did you know this? No? I did. It was the year I switched from Elementary Ed and went for Computer Science. That’s how profound the experience was for me. P.R.O.F.O.U.N.D.

Anyway, so I had this kid in my class, this really cute little guy named Evan. Evan was 4 years old when we met. He had a tremendous crush on me. “Miss Leslliieee” he’d say, “I made you a necklace!” He once told his parents he was going to marry me. “No, son,” his dad said, “She doesn’t make enough money.” I loved his parents.

He was the kind of kid everyone wants to have in their class, the kind of kid everyone wants to be friends with and the kind of kid that would befriend the shyest girl in the class because she was always alone on the playground. The guy was a hero. His parents called him “Big E” because he was. He was a big little guy.

I always wanted to call my son Big ___.  But instead, we had a “baby O”. Because? Big “O” just didn’t sound right.

Not that we don’t call our children completely innapropriate names out in public. There’s Doodiehead, pooper, stinker. Doodiehead is one of those things that flew out of my mouth one day and kept flying out of my mouth for three years.

Feminism barefoot in the kitchen

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I’ve been rolling around ideals about my identity for some time now. Struggling with my decision to stay at home. Struggling with the images I put in my daughter’s head. Struggling with a place for a strong, empowered woman in a traditional home context. I’m educated, I’m strong, I’m willful. I’m also a woman who cries, gets irrational and stays home to clean the house and care for her children.

I no longer think these things are mutually exclusive.

I’ve recently started reading The Red Tent and find the role of women almost empowering. The community of females working together to care for the families; The work, actual hard labor, it requires to be in this role of caregiver: That alone is empowering.

But to find a group of women, online and in person, who share your views, help raise your children, walk through life with you: that is where empowerment becomes confidence. And while I appreciate, and admire, and respect and live up to, the role of being a strong woman, that does not include being a woman for woman’s sake or working in a job because “it is my right”. It’s also my right to choose to stay home, to care for my family and to be a woman.

Did you hear that? I’m ok with being a WOMAN. I’m ok with being a GIRL. I’m ok with having boobs and hormones and PMS. I’m ok with makeup and wine and shaving my legs. And I love that I’m a woman and that means I am not a man and I’m more emotional, hormonal, and social. I love that I care about hair and makeup. I’m ok with that. Being a feminist does not mean I have to be equal to a man in every way, but rather as a New Feminist, a feminist of the 2000’s. It means I am strong, confident and capable with being a woman: A life-giving, home-making, emotional-at-times woman.

If women are from Venus, Mars must not have phones Parenting

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I remember the day I knew I could marry Mr. Flinger. Surprisingly, it wasn’t in High School when we were mushy young love-birds. (gag) It wasn’t during college when we were best friends, not-dating, and desperately fixing one another up with other people. It wasn’t until years later, at 24, having moved home to Texas and back that I saw him with my cousin Danielle. I remember the summer, of 2000, living with my Uncle and Aunt having found a job up in Portland, but not an apartment. I moved up from Houston ready to start my job and my new life.  One day we took my cousin roller blading. She so adored Mr. Flinger that she made a necklace for him, a pretty little thing with beads and a star at the center. Perfect for an 8 year old and slightly odd for a 25 year old man. Mr. Flinger wore that necklace all day long. He wore it roller blading at the park. He wore it to the store. He wore it even though the small string barely fit around his neck and the star jabbed him as it stuck straight out, strained on its new owner.

This was the day I realized he would make a wonderful dad; Years and years before that day ever happened.

Years and Years later, we started a family together. A family with a man I've known for 17 years. And yes, that freaks me the hell out. Why shouldn’t it?

Most days we do just fine. We go places. We enjoy friends. It’s lovely. There are the meltdowns. There is screaming (the baby) and crying (LB) and the occasional W.T.F. (me) but usually, we do ok. We manage. We’re.. happy. Really.

But I clock out at 5. I expect the man with the star necklace to walk through that door at five. I NEED the man to walk through that door at five. FIVE. That’s an entire hour after he gets off work, providing for traffic and the all important “getting things squared away” time. Five. O’clock. That’s when help walks through the door and the children smile/laugh/outburst with glee at the sight of Daddy.

I don’t suck! The post with all the links…

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Surprisingly, you people love to talk vajayjays and beer. Or babies. Or my lack of s.e.x life. Or d) all the above. Which suits me just fine because right now, as of this moment, I have nothing profound. Nada. Oh, sure, I’ve been fawning all over Julia Sweeney lately, and her CD Letting Go of God. I’ve even taken notes, as in Hand Written Notes, in a journal, with a pen, and… paper. I know. What’s paper? But the truth is, the sun, my toddler, my newborn

seven week old and my mother are kicking my ass as of late. The type of ass-whooping that entails falling asleep in the recliner whilst rocking the boy child only to find oneself up as the entire family sleeps muttering cusswords under her breath because why-for-the-love-of-god-am-I-not-asleep-i-am-so-screeewweeeeed-tomorrow.

The good news is, I have been plotting. Or, rather, I’ve been thinking, which lately is the same thing. There will be a competition here. There will be a prize to win. There will be voting. Oh, that’s right.. you’re salivating at the very mention of free things and it’s true, there will be freedom. Freeness. Free. Things. Or, thing.

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However, since I’ve neglected my blog community for traveling to exotic, far away places like Bellingham, and Kirkland, and the pool, I wanted to post a thank you and a “RAWK ON” to everyone. Actually, what I wanted to say is WHEE! I DON’T SUCK!

5/10/2007

Are we all bumbo bumbling idiots?

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Seriously? As in ... Seriously? You’re kidding, right?

These are the first thoughts that ran through my head upon hearing about the Bumbo Seat Recall. I have a Bumbo Seat. We love the Bumbo Seat. Baby O sits up in his Bumbo Seat. It’s a blue, soft, squishy seat of wonderfulness.

Baby O give it a thumb up. Or down. He’s really not sure what those things are on the end of his hands yet…

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Here’s the thing. Apparently if you place a child on top of a table or other high surface and leave them THEY MIGHT FALL OFF.

2/5/2007

From Sane to Totally Losing Your Shit in 12 hours or less: A timeline Parenting

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May 1: Officially 34 weeks pregnant.

11:00 AM- Whilst talking to a group of moms, have contraction. “BlahblahBlah.. uugghhhhh… uuhhhhhh… pppffffffff…. BlahBlahBlah.” Perhaps mention that you’ve been noticing more of these braxtin gigs lately. Also, they hurt.

12:00PM- Have lunch outside with Mr. Flinger. Choose a Venti water at Starbucks instead of coffee because uuugghhhhhhh… uhhhhh.. ppffffffffff contracting. Remember that last time around false labor is most usually brought on by dehydration.

1:00 PM- Pee

1:15PM- Pee

2/3/2007

Herding Buffalo ADHD

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I have this disease Mr. Flinger calls “Herding Buffalo.” It usually occurs when life is in complete chaos and there is little time for anything.  It usually happens when an idea enters my busy brain and suddenly it can’t get out. The single idea turns in to fifty things that need to be done RIGHT! NOW! and suddenly there is the sound of herding buffalo in my head.

Right now, I have Herding Buffalo.

I last got Herding Buffalo when we were moving to Seattle. It came up often during the moving process, since moving is a bit stressful, especially moving states and jobs. Instead of writing a list of simple things such as “Sell House. Get rid of Crap. Buy House. Get moving truck. Move.” I started getting dizzy with details. Once the “sell house” entered my head, I was crazy with lists of things we had been meaning to do for two years. “Fix stairs in backyard to playhouse” “get rid of dog pot-holes” “plant flowers” “re-landscape!” “Add on second story!” “Have roof replaced!!”

Each item gets louder and bigger. Each item grows from necessity to complete obscenity. Each time there is another buffalo and suddenly I’m crying under the kitchen sink because OH MY GOD THERE IS SO MUCH WE HAVE TO DO. Mr. Flinger would look at me and say, “I have “sell house” on my list. That’s. It.”

Sometimes I wish I was a simple man.