Browsing Tag



Kids Holiday Gift Guide

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A roundup of fun gift suggestions for kids this holiday season!

My kids had some funny things on their Christmas lists this year.

Things like “garage door opener so I can get into the house when you’re not home.” (That was from a six-year-old.)

And “life-size Transfomers Rescue Bots.” Umm yeah. Not happening. Read More »


The Questions You Shouldn’t Ask

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Some questions are really just none of my damn business!

The Questions You Shouldn't Ask

When I was in high school, I had a running coach that I really admired.

She was fit, she was talented, she was fun…all the things that I wanted to be when I was an adult.

But I was puzzled. Read More »


Let’s Color Together!

This post may contain affiliate links. Read full disclosure policy here.I received a copy of Let’s Color Together for the purposes of this post. All opinions are my own. 

Check out the unique new coloring book that’s for kids AND adults!


I loved to color as a child. I remember the joy of having a good box of 64 Crayola crayons and a new coloring book.

Barbie coloring books were my favorite. I loved deciding what color Barbie’s shoes, dress, and hair were going to be for whatever event she had going on that day.

I haven’t colored in many years, even though my daughter colors almost every day. Read More »

Parenting Problems/Tips

Rewinding the Clock

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I read something that made me stop and think. But was it too late to make a difference?

Rewinding the Clock

While my Facebook feed is usually filled with a barage of mindless posts designed to waste my time and keep me scrolling, occasionally there is a diamond in the rough.

Something that makes me think.

Last night it was this:

David Young quote

I only wish I had seen it an hour sooner.

Because now it was 7:45 and my kids were already asleep…too late to rewind the clock and take it back.

And boy did I feel like a piece of shit, asshole mom.

Instead of filling my children with good thoughts before they went to bed, I screamed at them for not putting their toys away. Like really screamed.

Enough to make them cry.

Then as an added part of their punishment for their room being a mess, I didn’t read them any books.

I let them go to bad sad, hurt, angry, and probably a whole host of other damaging emotions, just to get my point across that we keep our house tidy– that is THE RULE.

Let me add, my kids (the ones I was yelling at) are five and three. Are they even capable of cleaning up to my standards? I’d like to think yes, but maybe not.

So after putting them to bed in a flood of my rage and their tears, I went downstairs. I cleaned up some more and then found myself on Facebook.

The David Young quote didn’t pop up first in my newsfeed, but after a few minutes of browsing there it was.

Of course, my mom is the person who had posted it and of course I assumed it was directed at me, because moms know everything.

It hit me hard when I envisioned how the night could have gone instead of how it did go. And as always, I worried about the long-term damage that yelling has on kids.

I don’t want them to see me as a monster, but that’s how I act when I start yelling. It’s like someone has lit my fuse and there’s no stopping me until I burn out.

I know in the moment that I need to stop screaming, but I don’t. Or I can’t. I’m not sure which, but it doesn’t really matter. The only thing that matters is that I know I need to stop before I end up doing some real psychological harm.

Just the other day, my five-year-old daughter was sitting at the kitchen table coloring. As she drew one of her favorite things to draw, a picture of the two of us surrounded by flowers and butterflies, she said to me, “Mommy, we should have a Girls’ Day where we play games and spend time together while Daddy watches the boys.”

It was so sweet and out of the blue that it caught me off guard. I instantly realized that for all of the horrible-ness I do to her when I yell, this little girl still loves me. She still wants to spend time with me and play games with me and color together.

So maybe I’m not past the point of no return yet. Maybe there’s still hope for my children to grow up remembering a calm, sane mom who counts to ten instead of unleashing her fury on defenseless kids.

All I can do now is try to change.

This quest to stop yelling is one I have attempted before, but I never followed through with it. I even wrote several posts about it.

But now I’m committed. I’m starting The Orange Rhino 30-Day Challenge to help me stop yelling today. Not tomorrow. TODAY.

It’s one activity a day for 30 days. I can do that. You can, too.

Maybe I can’t rewind the clock and get a do-over for last night. But I can ensure that my future hours and minutes are spent letting my kids feel loved and appreciated, clean rooms or not.

Image courtesy of David Young. His inspirational book, A Little Guide to a Big Life, is available here. Title image courtesy of Alvesgaspar [GFDL or CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons.

Parenting Problems/Tips

How to Raise Nice Kids

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It’s scary raising kids today in a world where bullying is prevalent. Here are some ideas on how to raise nice kids.

How to Raise Nice Kids

A few weeks ago, I saw a video (shown below) that moved me to tears.

It told the story of a boy who was bullied for several years. He became depressed and told his peers he was planning to kill himself.

Their reaction? They encouraged him, even taunted him to do it. And so he did. Read More »

Getting Fit Healthy-ish Natural/Holistic Parenting

Getting Kids Excited About Yoga

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Want to know how to get your kids excited about doing yoga? Here’s how the yoga craze started in my house!

Getting Kids Excited About Yoga

“But it’s NOT FAIR!” my four-year-old whined as we climbed the stairs to her bedroom one evening.

“Well, you know, life isn’t fair,” I responded. “But tell me. What isn’t fair this time?”

She looked as despondent as if I had just informed her that I had accidentally deleted all her Sofia the First and The Winx Club episodes from the DVR. Read More »

Parenting Problems/Tips Products Reviews

7 Reasons You May Need Sleep Help From A Pro

This post may contain affiliate links. Read full disclosure policy here.This post is sponsored by The Baby Sleep Site. All opinions are my own.

You can only deal with sleepless nights for so long. Here is some expert advice for figuring out when it’s time to consult a sleep professional.

7 Reasons You May Need Sleep Help From a Pro

Sleep. We all want it.

Moms, especially, are told that a lifetime of sleepless nights awaits us after having kids. But is that necessarily true? 

In my house (three kids aged 4, 2, and almost 1), we have the occasional night-waking by a child once every few weeks, but other than that, they all sleep through the night from 6 or 7:00 P.M. to 6 or 7:00 A.M.

But it wasn’t always that way. Each of my kids has gone through periods of waking several times a night or not napping or waking too early. Read More »

Parenting Problems/Tips

7 Things to Consider Before Getting Bunk Beds

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Thinking of getting bunk beds? Here are seven things to consider before getting bunk beds for your kids.

7 Things to Consider Before Getting Bunk Beds

As a child, I always always always wanted bunk beds. I thought they were the coolest.

When it came time for my two older kids to share a room in order to prepare for Baby #3, the choice was obvious to me– bunk beds!

But they are not for everyone. 

Here are seven things to consider before getting bunk bedsRead More »

Parenting Pregnancy Problems/Tips

When You’re Going to Have Your Second Child

Second Baby

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Note: I wrote this essay for my sister-in-law’s baby shower, as she prepares to welcome her second child in a few months.

It’s no secret that being a mom is…challenging.

With the birth of your first baby, the world as you know it ends. Your life now revolves around a tiny little creature’s feedings and nap times. You pass out by 8:30 only to be awoken two hours later and then two hours after that. (And repeat.)

You say goodbye to your friends, your social life, and any hope of having a day in which you get showered, dressed, blow-dry your hair, and put makeup on.

There are so many things to learn, so many decisions to make. Do I breastfeed or use formula? Sleep-train or not? Should I let her use a pacifier? Which diapers are the best? Read More »

Parenting Problems/Tips

It Ain’t Easy


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On Friday I shared the above picture on my blog’s Facebook page. It was my son and me, smiling outside a rest stop on our way up to the Poconos.

A reader commented, “Your pics make three [kids] look easy.”

I don’t know why, but the comment made me feel bad. (NOT because of what she said, which I take as a total compliment! Only because I worried that maybe I was being inauthentic.)

I never intend to make parenting look easy, because it’s not. I actually can’t stand the people who make having kids look like it’s all crafts and cupcakes, when for me it’s more like snacks, more snacks, and too many episodes of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood. Read More »

Activities Parenting Products

25 Adorable Children’s Valentine’s Day Books

 Children's Valentine's Day Books

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It’s just about one month until Valentine’s Day! One of my family’s favorite ways to get into the spirit of a holiday is to read books about it.

We have several of the books on this list and I’m excited to add a few more to our collection this year. 

I definitely want the Little People Lift the Flaps one, because my kids love the other book we have in that series.

Here’s a collection of 25 Children’s Valentine’s Day books that will be great additions to your child’s library. Read More »


The Most Important Resolution A Mom Can Make

New Years Resolution
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Last week I made a list of 101 New Year’s Resolution Ideas to give people ideas of how to better themselves in 2015.

From that list, there are probably dozens that I could choose. Several that I should choose.

  • Spend less time on Facebook
  • Eat less junk food
  • Stick to a cleaning schedule

But I’m only going to focus on one New Year’s resolution this year… Read More »

Friendship Relationships

#TwinHillsSanta Spreads Holiday Cheer to Alaska


We are right in the thick of the holiday season and I see the goodwill all around me.

Companies are hosting toy drives, neighbors drop off Christmas cookies, and even strangers at the busy stores seem to be in a cheerful mood. Well, most of them, anyway.

It’s the holiday spirit!

And even bloggers are getting into the act to create a wonderful holiday for a group of unsuspecting kids in a remote Alaskan village.

Listen to this heartwarming story… Read More »

Guilty Pleasures Holiday Gift Guide Parenting Products Reviews Shopping

Holiday Gift Guide: Kids

holiday gift guide kids

This post may contain affiliate links. Read full disclosure policy here. I received some of these items for review and possible inclusion in my Gift Guide. All opinions are my own.

Shopping for kids is probably the easiest of everyone on my list. It seems as if my daughter is intrigued by anything she sees on TV or in the stores.

I tried to be a bit discriminating, however, when selecting toys for this Holiday Gift Guide for Kids.

See something you like? Pin the image for later, or just follow my “Holiday Gift Guide: Kids” Pinterest board (there’s a link at the end of this post.)

Also, I’m giving away one of the toys listed here. Keep reading to find out which one and good luck! Read More »


I Hate You, Daylight Savings

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Go f*ck yourself, Daylight Savings.

Daylight Savings, in case you weren’t aware…I hate you.

Lots of people I talk to hate you also. Lots of moms and dads…moms and dads who had their kids on a nice little schedule up until this Sunday!

As it stayed darker later in the morning during the week just before Daylight Savings, my own kids had finally started sleeping in until an acceptable time– 7:00 or 7:30ish.

But that week of glorious free time I had in the mornings to drink my tea uninterrupted and do some writing was short-lived.  Read More »

Guilty Pleasures Marriage Parenting Pregnancy Problems/Tips Relationships

The Guilt-Free Glass of Wine

Guilt Free Glass of Wine

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Ahh. The ever-elusive guilt-free glass of wine. Moms of little ones, you know what I’m talkin’ bout. (Willis.)

Remember when you could have a few glasses of wine at night with no other cares in the world? When will that happen again?!

I’m 25 weeks pregnant right now. I have 15 weeks to go. Read More »

Parenting Problems/Tips

What’s In My Bag? (Non-Celeb Edition)

What's in my Bag
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My friend Carrie of Chockababy asked on Facebook the other day, “Why are there Cheerios in my purse?”

I had to giggle because only an hour before I had been at the drive-thru getting some chicken nuggets and fries (don’t judge) and when I went to pay, I pulled out some loose Cheerios and (inexplicably) sand.


Has my purse been off galavanting on day trips to the Jersey shore? Did it take a weekend jaunt to Miami? Read More »

Guilty Pleasures Parenting Products Reviews Shopping

Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.7: Review

Disclosure: I was provided with a Verizon Wireless Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.7 to try out for the purposes of this review. All opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links. Read my full disclosure policy here.

Lately I have been realizing that it’s probably a good idea for my three-year-old to do something besides watch YouTube videos on our tablet.

So when Verizon Wireless offered to loan me a Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.7 and suggest some apps that would be appropriate for my daughter, I immediately agreed. Read More »

Fashion Parenting

Fashion Police: Playground Edition

Fashion Police Playground Edition

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The fashion police aren’t just for grown adults. There are little children that need guidance, too.

Little children whose mommies are too busy on Facebook and watching Bravo to dress them in cute little outfits every time they venture out.

I mean, sure it’s nice that the moms actually take their kids to the park, but is it so hard for the kids to look stylish when they go?

No. It is not. Read More »