Sunday, March 28, 2010

Sex 101

Every morning when Dante wakes up, he calls me from his room and asks if he can come lay in bed with me until it is time to get up. During the week, it's just the two of us and on the weekends (since Randy is off of work) it's the three of us, but this weekend Randy is away for 4 days in North Carolina.

This morning Dante woke up and called me and when I told him he could come in and lay he came in and told me he "wanted to talk".

Me: "Sure honey what do you want to talk about?"

Dante: "Mommy I want to talk about sex"

Me (taken aback since he is 3 1/2): "Ok, well what do you want to know about sex?"

Dante (frustrated): No, mom, I want to ask you something!"

Me: "Ok, what?"

Dante: "Will you have sex with Daddy when he comes home?"

Me: "Well, Dante, what is 'having sex'? Can you tell me?"

Dante (rolling his eyes, seriously, at 3 1/2 he rolls his eyes): "Sigh, mommy I told you already!"

Me: "Well, tell me again, I forgot."

Dante: "When you have sex with daddy you take off your shirt, lay him on the bed and give him a kiss. But not a regular kiss. You have to hold his face, like this" (cups his hands on his face)

Me: "So that's 'having sex'?"

Dante: "Yep"

Me: "Where did you learn this?"

Dante: "Watching The Office".

Now I would like to know, when are the sexy versions of The Office on? And how is my kid watching them and not me?

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

The Price is (Not) Right

I always like to think I am up on parenting trends and hip to the coolness that is being an awesome mom, so I have been a subscriber to a well-known parenting magazine since Dante was about a year old. I've been noticing recently (well maybe not so recently) that the articles in this magazine range from "Duh, I could have told you that" to "You're kidding me" to "Seriously? You had to write an article about this?". I've also noticed that a lot of the trends and fashions and "tips" they suggest are geared toward families who somehow have escaped the economic trying times and/or live on a planet where money grows on trees and is as abundant as bad talent on American Idol.

For example, the magazine has a page for "cool new" baby and child gadgets. One of said gadgets was a really neat backpack that converted into a diaper changer/kitchen table/flying car (not really, but it was still cool). I was reading the info about it and getting really excited about maybe snagging one for the new baby until I got to the price tag: $199. Um, two hundred bucks for a BACKPACK?!?!? I don't have two hundred bucks for groceries let alone a stupid backpack that doubles as a transformer. Unless it really does turn into a flying car or Optimus Prime, then you all can keep your $199 and shove it where the sun don't shine. Seriously. Who has two hundred bucks to throw away on a backpack? And if you do have said two hundred bucks, hi, let's be friends.

Another part of the magazine deals with "cool new" baby and childrens' fashion. The outfits are usually very "Hi, I'm a future Republican Sarah Palin 2012 voter", but there are a few here and there that I like from time to time. In the most recent issue, I spotted an adorable sweater vest that I thought would look great on Dante for his first day of school this year. Price tag? $69. No, I did not put the decimal point in the wrong place, it's a seventy dollar sweater vest that your pre-schooler will grow out of in about 10 minutes which may or may not happen after he rips it while playing Captain Jack Sparrow on the front porch. Seriously? Seventy bucks? Am I a horrible mother because I buy my kid what's on the sale rack at Target or Marshalls? Honestly, I think the most expensive article of clothing he owns are his shoes, which are Stride Rites and range in the $50 neighborhood, ONLY BECAUSE they are the best shoes for feet and are well made. But really, who pays seventy dollars for a sweater vest? And again, if you are that person, "Hi, my name is Alessia and I am looking for a rich friend to try and buy my affection".

What really took the cake with me was this month's edition and the article on how couples are saving money and "making it" through these tough economic times. Finally, I thought to myself, and article I can relate to and maybe pick up some tips on how not to drown. With Randy being pretty much the last man standing at work after 90% of the company was laid off, there is no chance in a blue moon that he will be getting a raise anytime soon, so we are basically living on fumes at the moment. So here was this article promising to show me how other families were doing it and I was excited to read it.

Fat Chance.

Ok, first of all, the first couple interviewed, their total income was $90,000 a year. NINETY THOUSAND DOLLARS A YEAR. Um, are you kidding me? How the frig are they "struggling" at NINETY THOUSAND DOLLARS A YEAR?!?!?! We don't even make HALF that and they are going to give ME tips on how to save? Oh, oh, oh wait, the husband had to give up his golf membership and she had to cancel her weekly spa treatments. Call the waaaahmbulance. Cry me a river. Richie Rich can't play golf. The next couples profiled weren't any better with their annual incomes ranging from $75,000 to $60,000 (they considered themselves "low income") and all of them claiming that their way of pinching pennies and saving was no NOT use the yacht for the season and keep it docked.

This issue also feature "bargain" family vacations starting at ONLY $875 a person!!! *slams head on table*. Ok, for me that should read "Bargain Family vacations starting at only $8.75 a person". Are these people kidding me?!?!?! Who are these people?!?! Why aren't we them?!?!

Really? Is this what parenting is about? How do we relate to this? Where do we fit in? Is there a parenting magazine out there called Parenting for People in the Real World or Parenting as though you are one paycheck away from being broke?

Because I'd really like to subscribe to that one instead.

Monday, March 8, 2010

The Empathy Belly: Suck it Up!

This weekend I worked the It's A Baby and Family Expo and one of the booths was the Miami Birthing Center (I think that was their name). What made this booth really special (other than ours, of course) was the fact that they had an "Empathy Belly" with them and were letting all the dads, dads-to-be, and new dads put it on.

If you don't know what an Empathy Belly is, it is basically a huge frontal piece that fits on the torso and belly and consists of breasts and a pregnant stomach all weighted accurately as though the person was between 8 and 9 months pregnant. In other words, it is supposed to made men (and non pregnant women, but mostly men) understand what it feels like to walk around with huge boobs and a person living inside you.

Let me just say that most of the men I saw participating in this activity were BIG WUSSES. Before the suit was even securely placed on them, half of them were complaining that it was "too heavy" or that it "hurt my back" or that "they felt stupid". Really? Really buddy? Try walking around like that FOR REAL! Guys get the extremely easy end of the whole "making babies" deal. Their "job" in making said baby lasts all of 5 minutes (7 if you're lucky) and then for the next 40 weeks they go off and tell everyone "WE'RE pregnant"!.

Um, excuse me. WE? WE are pregnant? No. Wrong. Sorry. I. Me. The Woman. The fat chick over here is pregnant. You are just walking around as though you are King of Fertilization and you scored some sort of miraculous goal or something.

Sorry guys but you're not the ones waking up every hour on the hour because you have to pee. You're not expanding to the size of Texas (unless you are my husband and gaining "Empathy Weight), and you're CERTAINLY NOT, at the end of this whole process, going to push a 7-9 pound human being out of a SMALL OPENING or get cut in half, have your insides moved around and pulled out and then get STAPLED back together like you're a 10th grade English Book Report (that would be my scenario).

So I would like to say to all the men who tried on the "Empathy Belly" at the Baby Expo this past weekend, "Shut Up and get over it". You were in the suit for all of 5 minutes. Seriously. Shut Up. Anyone who is still under the misguided, archaic notion that women are somehow "the weaker sex" needs to go visit a Baby Expo and watch all the men put on "Empathy Suits".

Ok, granted, when it comes to spiders, I am like a baby and need a big strong man to come rescue me before it jumps on my face and eats my eyes, but when it comes to being pregnant and having children, please.....Let the big girls handle it, mkay?

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Memo to Father Time

I want time to slow down please. I am already 5 months pregnant and it's going too fast! This is the last time in my life I will ever be pregnant and I want to savor each moment, each nausea, each ache, each get-up-in-the-middle-of-the-night-to-pee moment, every single bit of it. Yet when I look back and realize that 5 months have already passed, I get very upset.


This is it for me. I will never ever ever ever ever be pregnant again. We've made that important decision together. We don't want anymore children. We're not going to "try for the girl" and we're certainly not going to "see what happens" later on. No. I'm getting my tubes tied after the C-Section and Randy is getting snipped.

So there will be never again another time that I will have a Bean. That I will have sore boobs and stretch marks (no wait, I'll have those forever). But I will never feel that kick in the ribs again, or the head butt on my bladder, or get to see blobs of black and white images that techs tell me are the arms and legs on a sonogram.

So again, I ask Father Time....SLOW DOWN PLEASE!!!!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Well Hello There To You Too!

Mr. Bean
19 weeks 3 days
Waving "hello" to the world outside

Montessori? You mean Montesucky.

We are intending to send DS to a private Montessori school for the 2010-2011 school year, but just as a back-up and out of curiosity, I got all the paperwork and applications to enlist him in a Free VPK (Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten for the uninitiated) instead. The VPK folks were at the YMCA yesterday so I figured I would check it out.

First and foremost, 99.9999999% of the schools offering VPK are religious and therefore of absolutely NO INTEREST to us, so I decided to visit one of the 3 Montessori schools offering VPK in our area. I called them this morning and let them know we would be coming for a tour after my first doctor's appointment this morning.

So we get there and my first impression was that the place looked very small and run-down. Upon entering I was disgusted by how filthy it was. It was apalling. The "director" if you even want to call her that was literally 12 years old and HAD NO MONTESSORI TRAINING. When I asked if all the teachers were Montessori certified, I was informed that no one but the "head teacher" (whatever that was) was Montessori trained. Um, ok.

The first thing we were shown was the 2 year old group WHO WERE WATCHING TV. Are you kidding me?!?!?!? Montessori method is not about watching TV. Sorry. The next room we entered was the 3 year olds sitting on a DISGUSTING rug listening to a woman read a story. There were NO Montessori equivalent activities present (block stacking, number matching, eye/hand coordination lessons), NOTHING. The room was filthy, nay the entire BUILDING was filthy. So finally we are taken into the VPK rooms and I just wanted to scream. There was absolutely NO LEARNING or INSTRUCTION going on. Just kids running amok playing with standard toys. Half the toys were broken and raggedy as well. NONE of the standard Montessori activities were present: globes, maps, animal identifications, musical instruments, mathematical projects, etc. Are you effing kidding me?!?!?! There was no structure, no teaching, no sort of any Montessori program present and I was furious, embarassed for setting for in there and disgusted with the whole place.

Then the "director" took us out to the playground which looked like something out of Chernobyl or Dawn of the Dead. Garbage everywhere, rotting picnic tables, and a playground that looked more like a torture chamber from the movie Saw.

We were very nice and said thank you as we left (our "tour took less than 10 minutes) and we were given a card and told to "be in touch". HUGE FAT CHANCE LADY. How dare they attach the Montessori name to this pile of crap?!?! Seriouly, it looked like a glorified daycare run by idiots who couldn't care less.

Seeing this made us realize that somehow, someway, we are GOING to send DS to the private Montessori school that we fell in love with. It's a shame that the children in this dump will not benefit from such a place.

On a side note, and a whole other discussion altogether, I am also frustrated and unhappy about the lack of nonsectarian, nonreligious schools that are available to people out there who don't believe in god and are raising nonreligious children. But that's a whole other can of worms all together.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Another boy? I'm so sorry!

Lately when someone asks me what I am having and I say, happily mind you, "Another boy!", they give me a sad face and say "Awww shucks, another boy. That's too bad". Um, excuse me but fuck you. What kind of reaction is that when someone says they are having another baby? I usually look at them and snarkily say, "What the hell is that supposed to mean" and the person usually recovers with "Oh I just meant, didn't you want a girl?". No, jackass, I didn't WANT any specific gender. All I WANT is a healthy baby. That is what is important to me.

And no. We're not going to "try for the girl",so please stop asking me. Personally because I don't think having babies until you get your desired gender is too smart. I mean, what if we "try for a girl" and get another boy (which is highly likely since DH seems to make boys)? Then we'll have THREE kids. Do we keep "trying for the girl" until we end up with our own reality show on TLC?

For some reason, I think people lose all common sense and courtesy when confronted with a pregnant person. It's almost as though we have a sign on our head that says, "Please say inappropriate things to me about how big I am, how you're sad that the gender is not what you wanted, how puffy I look, and/or how I look like I am about to pop". Don't forget the sign on the stomach that says, "Hey random stranger, please come rub me in a way that would make a child molester feel weird".

So yes, I am having another boy. No, I am not sad or upset about it. No, we are not going to keep having babies until we have a girl. And no, I am SURE I am NOT carrying twins.

Now I want cake.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Addendum to the Disney Do's and Don'ts post

I would like to add a few very important other DO's and DON'T's for a Disney Family trip:

DO pack drinks, snacks, cold cuts and bread to make sandwiches and any other type of food you can think of.
- If you hotel room has a fridge, TAKE ADVANTAGE of this and get there with a cooler full of food to store for the days you are visiting the parks. This way, every morning, you can pack lunches for everyone and avoid paying $5.45 for a hot dog and/or $4.50 for a small bucket of popcorn. Prices for food at the parks are expensive, even if you are just buying off the cart. Make sure to also pack lots of water or juice since drinks are just as expensive. Disney doesn't mind that you do this. Your bags will be searched at each gate before entering, and no one ever told us that we couldn't bring in our food. We had sandwiches, sodas, juices, chips, goldfish, you name it and we saved a ton on eating.

Speaking of eating DO give yourself some extra cash just to eat a funnel cake.
- Seriously, if I have to explain this, then you don't deserve to enjoy the heaven on a plate that is a funnel cake.

And now a few more Don't's:

DON'T plan on keeping any sort of nap schedule.
- You're fooling yourself just as I was. I had it all planned. We'd go to the parks early in the morning, leave at about 1pm and go back to the hotel for naps. Fat chance. We got to the parks early sure enough, but with all the excitement and fun and "look at that!" and "let's do this", by the time we looked at our watch for the first time it was already 2:15 in the afternoon. Time is irrelevant in the parks. It's not your friend. It's got its own mind and before you even realize it, you've spent 6 hours wandering around the Magic Kindgom having a great time. You'll only realize it when you get back to your hotel and your feet are either bleeding, on fire, or missing altogether. So don't even think about naps. Bring a stroller. They will nap there.

Speaking of strollers, DON'T forget to bring one, and DON'T forget to bring a child leash because the stroller is basically going to be used to carry everything BUT your child or children.
- At one point, I think we had about 4 bags, 3 umbrellas, 4 jackets, empty water bottles, a bag of Jack and Sally dolls, 3 swords, 1 gun, and extra socks in the stroller. No child.
- The child leash is also a must (thanks Kristin) because your child will think that the best game ever is "hide behind something while a crowd of people walks by and give your parents a heart attack". Sure, the more uninitiated parents and/or childless folks will give you "the look" for having a kid on a leash, but the amount of people who DO carry their kids on leashes outweighs the judgmental idiots.

Oh, and last but not least...

DO expect this to happen: