Good Enough: My Mom Mantra

photo-16The other day, I read a post over at Daddy Drinks about playing the game of parenthood. He talks about parents and how we unavoidably judge each other, and it got me thinking about things I do that may be frowned upon. I stopped breast-feeding after five months (and never pumped and dumped). I don’t make my son wear socks if he says he’s not cold. I bribe with candy and sometimes even toy-driven sticker charts for more elaborate ruses. I’d like to say that even though I judge other parents for their actions that I’m hardest on myself, but that’s not true. I’m too competitive a person to take “the game of parenting” seriously. Doing so would result in a vicious soccer mom snowball effect that ends with me rocking in the fetal position on my crumb-ridden kitchen floor. The key to being a good (sane) mom is that I know when to cut myself some slack. If I get out of the house in the morning with Jed and I wearing socks that are both matching and clean, it’s a pretty good day. Of course, some days are better than others. Ever since becoming a mom, my mantra has become “good enough”. I didn’t get through my to-do list today, but it’s good enough. I didn’t put away all the laundry, but it’s good enough. This bottle of wine isn’t going to erase my hellish day, but it’s good enough.

What’s your mom mantra?





A New Year’s Eve Nugget

Looks like I’m ending the year on a very “me” note:

I was at the grocery store making a last-minute run to gather provisions for our Big Night In (better than average wine and beer, and a variety of frozen appetizers). We were in the check-out line when a mom a lane over called out to me with a laugh, “I have a three-year-old, and I let him put his own shoes on, too.”

I look down at Jed’s feet swinging from the cart, and sure enough his shoes are on the wrong feet. Only it was I who put them there. Not wanting to make her feel bad — and not wanting to look like a total moron myself — I smiled the “kids will be kids” smile and gracefully backed toward the credit card kiosk.

Hope your 2012 starts off on the right foot… with the right shoe:)

Happy New Year!


Belly to Belly: A “Getting Ready for Baby” Guide

Belly to Belly: Pregnancy pointers from a mom-in-progress.

My best friend is pregnant! She is having a girl, due April 19… one day after my birthday. I am so, so excited for her that I’m already thinking of gift ideas, even though she hasn’t registered. Mothers of boys will understand the tantalizing anticipation of shopping for sugar, spice and everything nice. Girl stuff is just so freakin’ cute!

Pregnant me, right before pumpkin time.

Parenting and pregnancy are like politics. They are touchy topics on  which everyone has an opinion, and unless I’m asked for mine, I keep my mouth shut. Well I happen to know that Emily actually wants my advice. She gets me, she trusts me, and if she thinks I’m totally off-base, she’s not afraid to speak up, or at least smile to my face and then ignore it later as a nice, Southern gal should.

I figured as long as I’m writing these tips out for Em, I might as well share them with you! So I decided to create a guide — a series of posts that I’m going to call “Belly to Belly”, dedicated to imparting my motherly wisdom to Emily and any other expecting parent who cares to take a look. This won’t include anything scientific or biological stuff (“Week 19: Your baby is now the size of a rutabaga and has the cognitive ability to start judging you.”). But I will touch on everything from belly-touching etiquette and registries to swelling solutions.*

For this first installment I’m going to re-post an entry I wrote from a previous blog when I was about as far along as Emily:

May 20, 2009

We found out we’re having a boy! And boy does he love showing off his pee-pee. I was really freaked out because his genitalia looked to be the size of his head (his dad was so proud), but then the technician informed me that she’d blown up that part of the screen so we could see it better. Almost had a circus freak on our hands. So my sex dream was wrong. I just hope the dream where my son ends up in jail is wrong, too.

So far, Jed’s stayed out of prison, although he’s been frequenting the “thinking chair” quite a bit.

Look for Belly to Belly posts from now through April!

She's a natural! Emily holding my baby boy.
*This guide is solely based on my personal experiences as a pregnant woman and new mother. I am not a licensed parent. Please consult your common sense before following any advice. 

Nature, nurture and tofu.

Jed and I were playing outside on our driveway the other day and he was collecting rocks. “Here go, Mommy!” he said, holding them up to me.

“Thank you!” I said, “What is it?”

“Tofu!” he replied. He proceeded to stack them up to make a “tofu sandwich”:

While Dave thinks tofu tastes about as appetizing as these rocks look, I absolutely love it. But I don’t push it on Jed. He’s eaten it a few times and he likes it, but it’s not a prevalent part of his diet. Which makes me wonder: how much of my taste influences his and how much of it is about living in Asheville? He likes to play “haircut”. Is he going to start giving us dreads? Perhaps play holistic healer? (And Mommy does have blue hair now.) If we lived in Charlotte, would he be playing banker or NASCAR and pretending the rocks were Bojangles biscuits?

I love Asheville and really do hope the mountain mentality rubs off on him. In a perfect world, he’d get the best of Asheville, the best of Mom and the best of Dad. Although he does love to bathe. I don’t where he got that from.

How does your town’s culture influence your child?