Confessions of a Middleagedmom

surviving motherhood in the “middle ages”

2 Thank You Cards for Teacher Gift August 31, 2009

Filed under: handmade cards,preschool,scrapbooking — middleagedmom @ 2:52 pm

Sorry this is late but I only worked on these photos recently.

Here are 2 of the 6 cards that I made for Princess’s teacher’s birthday gift. Along with the box of handmade cards, I also gave her a book and a small tube of hand lotion.

tycard2 teacher gift  This card is made to look like a manila folder. I used my own template. I used a ivory colored cardstock. The patterned paper is actually a patterned vellum paper. Then I embellished it with a Mini Fresh Cuts Rustic Flower. Over the Fresh Cuts flower I added a self-adhesive glitter clear from Making Memories. (I used a piece of yellow cardstock behind the card just show it would show up better when I scanned it.) On the tab I added a piece of brown paper and the words “thank you” on a tea-stained patterned paper. I embellished that with a rhinestone flower. The font for the words “thank you” is called CK Beanstalk.

tycard3 teacher gift

For this card I used  white cardstock. The patterned paper is a gray color with a floral design. (I don’t know the name of the design or the brand). Then I added a scrap piece of iridescent textured white cardstock over the middle of the card. On the computer I printed the words “Thank You” on a white cardstock and mounted that onto a piece of black cardstock. Then I adhered that to the white iridescent cardstock. The font I used is called Edwardian Script. I stamped the images above and below the words. The clear stamps were froma stamp set that I bought at Costco. It’s really hard to see but I also added a piece of vellum that has iridescent dots on top of the white iridescent cardstock. The edges of the vellum are cut with the “Antique” scissors from Creative Memories.

Both of the cards are blank on the inside.

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Will the Real Belly Please Stand Up? August 28, 2009

Filed under: family,health,middleaged,moms,random thoughts,women — middleagedmom @ 10:22 am
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OMG! Have you seen the picture of the woman posing in her underwear with her real belly…pooch and all? It’s  was featured in an issue of  Glamour magazine. There’s been a lot of buzz about it.  Check it out here.

I just saw her this week on a morning talk show. She actually looks great! She is supposedly a size 12 (average in US). You know how they say that TV adds something like 10 pounds to you? Well, she doesn’t even look like it. She is 20 years old and has never had children.

Many women (and some men)  have been talking about how it’s great to see a “real” woman in a fashion magazine. Others (men and women) are complaining that she’s fat and doesn’t belong in a magazine.

One thing that I find strange about all of this is how many women are so judgmental of this 20 year old model and her body. I wish women would be more supportive of other women. Why can’t women celebrate other women? A lot of the women that don’t like her appearance are complaining about how she should exercise and eat better. They are comparing her to themselves. It reminds me of  the Mommy Wars, the “fight” against working moms and stay at home moms. Why? Why are women “fighting” with other women?

I think she looks great in her underwear and in her street clothes. Hooray to Glamour Magazine for having the courage to put her in the magazine in the first place. The editor of Glamour was also on the morning talk show and she said that the response to the article was amazing and mostly positive. She also claims that her magazine has been changed because of the article and the response.

Being a mom of 2 girls, I sure hope there are some changes, both in media and in women.

 

Letting Go is Hard to Do August 27, 2009

Filed under: children,family,life lessons,moms,preschool — middleagedmom @ 3:15 pm
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As a parent, I often struggle with the idea of “letting go” of my children. Remember I’m the overprotective mommy.

When Princess started preschool, it was difficult to let her go. I was worried about her being by herself  in a new environment. I was worried about how she would make her needs known to a teacher who didn’t really know her. I was worried about how she would “get along” with other children. I was worried about her eating lunch and taking a nap at school. Let’s face it. I was worried about everything.

As it turned out, her preschool had a great transition period. It not only made it easier for Princess on the first official day of preschool but it helped me alleviate a lot of the fears that I was carrying around.

Just think in just about a year, my little Princess will be starting Kindergarten. As far as I know, there really isn’t a transition period for Kindergarten. Okay, maybe a half day or so in the first week so that the students can get tested, so I hear. I know that it will be a huge step towards growing up for Princess and for me.

If you’re like me in this struggle to “let go” of your child, you may enjoy this letter written by a mom to her son on his first day of Kindergarten. It was so heart warming and brought a tear to my eye.

This was one of my favorite parts:

Once I expressed my own hesitations about school to a teacher acquaintance. Her advice stuck with me: The hardest part of releasing you to elementary school — or any new experience — is realizing that I must give you up to the less-than-perfect world that awaits you.

 I don’t think it gets easier as the grow older and transition to different phases of their lives. I know that I’ll probably always struggle with the idea of “letting go” of my girls. I also know that writing a letter like this and putting it into their Letter Box will not only help them but it will help me let go. (See my previous post about the Letter Box.)

 

From Your Lips…But Not to My Ears

Filed under: children,dad,family,moms,sign language,sisters,toddlers — middleagedmom @ 12:21 am

One of the first words that ever came out of my children’s mouths was “daddy”! Yes, they love their daddy!

I wonder why it is that “daddy” is so easy for them to say. Okay, I’m not a linguist or a speech pathologist so I don’t know the little intricacies of how the mouth, tongue, etc work when it comes to speech and language.

But from my point of view, the point of view of a stay at home mom, why can’t they learn to say “mommy” first? Let’s get real here. Am I not the one who bonded with them from the very beginning. The one who spoke to them and sang to them when they were still in my womb. The one who breastfed them for over a year of their lives. The one who spent endless hours carrying them to soothe them and help them get to sleep. The one who spends 24 hours a day 7 days a week taking care of them. The one who takes them to music class, art class, and other fun activities.

I’m starting to feel taken for granted! Not really. But I am still waiting to hear Baby say the word “mommy”.

Tonight I had to go out to visit a girlfriend’s father in the hospital.  When I left the house, Baby was crying and very upset. Mr. MaD said she kept crying most of the night and she kept walking to the front door. Poor thing!

Although her crying made my heart sink, that’s not the worst of it. Mr. MaD informed me that Baby was signing “mommy” and saying “mommy”  while crying. She even did it more than once!

I couldn’t believe it! I said to Mr. MaD, “She was saying mommy?” He replied, “Yes, and signing it too.”

I have never heard her say “mommy” or seen her sign “mommy” once to my face.  I have heard her say “maa…maa”  a few times while crying in her crib for me to take her out. But that only happened a few times. 

 Why is it that she can say “mommy” and sign “mommy” when I’m not around?  I will surely be celebrating when I hear those long awaited words come out of her mouth.

Tell me about your experience. Did your child say “daddy” or “mommy” first?

 

Do Words Have Power? August 25, 2009

Filed under: dad,family,moms,random thoughts,Uncategorized — middleagedmom @ 2:01 pm
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Do words have power?

You would think so. Maybe it’s just the spoken word? Apparently, the written word carries no weight. At least at my home it doesn’t.

Our home is enclosed by a fence and a 2 gates. On our main front gate we have a sign that says “No Soliciting”.  We have a smaller gate on the side of our driveway that also leads to the front door. Strangely enough, that “No Soliciting” sign might as well be written in Ancient Egyptian since people tend to ignore it.  Today, soon after I put Baby down for her nap, I hear banging on my front door. I mean banging  not a quiet gentle knock.  I happened to be on the computer in the bedroom so I peeked out the window and noticed an unfamiliar truck in the driveway. Then I hear 3 more bangs on the door so I rush to the front door hoping that Baby doesn’t wake up from the noise.

I open the window slightly and say, “Yes?”

The stranger (man) says, “I’m looking for work. Do you need someone to cut down your trees?”

I say, “No, I’m sorry but we don’t have money for that.” 

He says, “Okay.” and walks out of the gate.

First of all, I just can’t believe the number of people who enter our gate to “sell” something even if we have a sign basically saying that we’re not interested. This isn’t the first time that someone has approached our home for some yard work. I mean I understand that we are in hard economic times but I don’t appreciate the “cold calls” to my front door! Not only have we been approached for yard work, we also get religious groups like Jehovah’s Witnesses and others doing fund-raising.

Secondly, it’s a little scary being a SAHM with your child and have strangers come knocking on your door. These days you can’t trust anyone. I never open my front door to strangers. I always try to talk from the window slightly open.  I really wish I had one of those cameras by the front door with an intercom system.

Having a gate somehow gives you a false sense of security, especially since our gates don’t lock. That may be something we have to look into. I am a little hesitant about that just in case of emergency situations.

I think that thing that bothers me the most is the lack of respect by people. I would never approach a home with a “No Soliciting” sign and try to sell something. I’ve seen people come through our side gate (which is not as accessible) as the front gate…as if trying to avoid the “No Soliciting” sign on the front gate. You know the old adage, “Out of sight, out of mind.”

I’m thinking that I need to tell Mr. MaD to get a bigger “No Soliciting” sign for our gate. I think I’ll also have to put one right by the front door just in case they don’t see the one on the gate.

Has anything like this ever happened to you? What do you do in situations like this?

 

Sole Authority August 20, 2009

Filed under: children,dad,family,moms,sisters,toddlers — middleagedmom @ 3:11 pm
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Last weekend we decided it was time to get new shoes for Princess and Baby. So off we went to our neighborhood Payless Shoe store.

At first Baby didn’t want to try on any shoes, so she protested when I tried to remove her old shoes or when I tried to show her a new pair of shoes.  I decided that it would be best to wait until we found some shoes for Princess.

Princess was eager to look at shoes. Her eyes and hands went straight for the gold “patent leather” sandals! Funny! I explained that she could try those on but we weren’t getting them for school. She pranced around the store for a while in the the gold sandals then willingly took them off. I showed her a pair of pink sneakers and a pair of  brown sneakers and asked her which one she’d like to try on. She immediately pointed to the pink ones.   I secretly cheered when she picked the pink ones. I told her that the pink ones were so pretty.  

Here’s the pair of shoes that Princess picked.

Princess's shoes

Princess continued to try on some other shoes that she picked on her own. Isn’t she such a girl? Who doesn’t love to try on shoes?

After seeing Princess try on all those shoes, Baby decided she would be willing to try on some shoes too. So I picked out the same cute pair of pink sneakers and handed them to Mr. MaD. While he put them on Baby, I left the store to take Princess to the potty. Just before leaving I told Mr. MaD to try on the brown Dora shoes just in case it was easier to put on or easier to wear. I explained that the brown shoes were a little softer.

When we returned to the store, I noticed that Baby had the brown shoes on. I asked Mr. MaD what happened with the shoe fitting. He explained that we should get a 1/2 size bigger since it would be easier to put on. Not too mention that toddler’s feet seem to grow so fast. I asked him how the pink shoes compared to the brown ones. He said that the brown ones were softer but the pink ones were fine too. We decided to get the pink ones for Baby so that it would match Princess.  Mr. MaD wanted Baby to put the pink shoes on to show me how it fit.  As he began removing the brown shoes, Baby started pushing his hands away and grumbling big time! Mr. MaD removed one side of the brown shoes and Baby began screaming! Yes, screaming in Payless shoe store. He tried to get the pink shoe on her foot but she kept pulling her foot away and pushing his hand away with her hand. I couldn’t believe my eyes! Could this toddler of 1.5 years be so darn picky? Yes! She knew exactly which pair of shoes she wanted and she did not want us to make her change. After a few minutes of fussing, crying, and fighting, I told Mr. MaD to just let her wear those brown shoes.

I wouldn’t have matching cute pink shoes for my girls.

We relented and decided to get the brown Dora shoes for Baby. I told Mr. MaD that I didn’t want to “fight “with Baby about her shoes every single day.  I may have to start calling her “the Queen” since she thinks she’s the boss.

So, here are the brown Dora shoes that Baby insisted on having.

Baby's shoes

I’ve learned that you have to know which battles to win and which battles to lose! I certainly lost this one.

 

Mini Toddler Bento August 19, 2009

Filed under: bento box,bento lunches,children,family,food,toddlers — middleagedmom @ 3:35 pm
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Today I used my mini musubi (rice ball) maker from Daiso. It’s the cutest thing. I wish I had some pre-cut nori (seaweed) strips to put on my musubi. I decided to add some furikake to the rice to season it. I used brown rice instead of white.

 

mini musubi1

 

mini musubi2

 

Here’s the mini toddler bento that I made for Baby’s lunch today. We had a playdate and I wanted her to eat before we left just in case she fell asleep on the way home.

 

mini toddler bento

 

Besides the mini musubi, I have some lemon herb chicken (from Whole Foods Meat Counter) blueberries and grapes. My bento is kind of lacking in color. I wish I had some lettuce. I think it also needs some orange. I forgot that I had a mango in my refrigerator. I know it’s blurry but the little picks are animal shapes. The yellow one is a snake and the blue one is a seahorse.

I used the safe handling tips from Lunch in a Box. I cooked the rice in the morning so I made the musubi when it was warm then let them come to room temperature before packing. The chicken was leftover from last night so I reheated it then let it come back to room temperature before packing in the foil food cup.

Baby ate most of the lunch but she didn’t want the grapes or blueberries so I ate that. Yes, she is a little on the picky side.