Friday, February 26, 2010

Got the stuck-in-the-house blues???

So my original topic for this weeks post was 5 must haves for play days at the park but.... since my east coast readers are in the middle of an epic snowy winter I have decided to change the subject. Instead we will explore the must haves for days being shut in the house, which is helpful to all my Phoenix residents as well since none of us dare to be out doors once June rolls around.
Countless hours spent inside with your children will send even the hippest of Mommas running for the nearest asylum. Have you ever noticed that there is nowhere to hide either? The best thing we can do is embrace and remember that the children are bored, bored, bored! The same toys, games, TV shows don't cut it for the 10th time in a row. Our children are depending on us for a solution because well, its our jobs.

*Got housework? include your kids! Yes, yes at first it seems like more trouble than its worth, but think about if you didn't engage them to help out, they would just be underneath your feet getting in the way. So which would you rather have? I'm not talking about play vacuums, brooms and stuff. I'm talking about the real thing. I often detach my vacuum hose and let them have at it, even it takes them 30 min to clean a corner of the room. Kids always always think the real thing is better and the toy versions just don't cut it. With older children they could care less about cleaning but then again older children can entertain themselves easier and often steer clear when housework is being done in fear of they may be asked to do something.

*Build a fort! I know we all can agree that forts rock on so many different levels. Such simple construction too! All that is needed is a sheet (or 2 or 3) and some strategically placed furniture and ta-da! Once constructed the possibilities are endless! Remember all those toys, games, and TV shows that were old news? Suddenly they become waaaaaay cool again because they are being done from inside the fort. That's Momma magic right there! Older children can't resist a good fort either and really neither can we. Its nostalgic.

*Do something involving scissors and glue. Yes I know it sounds messy and maybe dangerous but that's half the reason we hardly ever do things involving scissors and glue. My house is all tile so clean up is pretty easy. For those of you with carpet just spread out in your kitchen instead. I'm not sure why but kids love cutting paper and gluing it. If you wanna be real daring and even more Hip, involve glitter.

*And finally, Do the unexpected! If you normally don't allow your kids in your bed with popcorn and a movie, do it! Or if you are a strict bath at night kind of Momma, put them in the shower in the afternoon with an umbrella or even in the bath with some bubbles that they can blow. At my house we have playroom picnics at mealtime which is always so so cool of me. My point is mix it up a little and go the extra mile for sanity. A messy room is not that big of a deal. I know I would rather be in a happy mess than a angry palace.

Well, good luck staying sane and remember bedtime does come eventually!

Friday, February 19, 2010

The unconventional, and what works for you.

I'm a firm believer in quality over quantity and an even bigger believer in picking my battles. When my 3 year old wants to wear his football shirt for the 3rd time in a row with 2 pairs of gym shorts on, why fight it? My soon to be 2 year old still sucks on a binky for bedtime, and if it makes him sleep well, which makes me sleep well, why fight it? My 11 year old would rather go to bed in his street clothes than change into PJ's. I really don't know why he prefers this, but if he is in bed by 9PM why fight it? On Friday nights I don't bathe the kids and read a story rather I get them in their PJ's, pop popcorn and put on Sponge Bob DVD's and let them fall asleep in my bed. On nights that I'm really tired and don't feel like messing around in the kitchen I make an easy (sometimes microwaved) dinner and we have a picnic in the playroom. To me, there are just so many more things I could be doing with my children then spending time arguing with them about the little things. So this week I invite everyone to share what they do with their children that may not be so conventional in the parenting world, but works for your family.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Its no longer "baby fat" when she turns 1!

Isaac, Seven, and myself 6 months pregnant.

Hannah is my little healthy chunk-a-chunk, with an appetite to match. I love her creases in her thighs and her pot belly that always causes her tees to roll up. After Seven, who is the toddler version of Gandhi,I welcome all things baby fat! That is, except for when it comes to myself. My biological fat clock is ticking. With the alarm set to go off April 6th (Hannah's 1st birthday). Where is it written that all baby weight gained should be off by the time baby turns one? And we have to commemorate the weight loss with birthday cake?!?! No fair!! And even though I don't know the source of this unsaid rule, I believe in it. After April I can no longer (in my mind) say see the baby? That's why... When I think about it I have basically been consistently pregnant for 3 years soooooo that means I have a 3 year grace period, right? Ill tell you one thing, Hip Momma to Hip Momma it was culinary heaven those 3 years. But, now is the time to reap (but not eat) what I sowed.
So I'm beginning the diet of the century again. Since its a new decade I will call it the diet of the decade that way I wont be reminded of past failed attempts every time I speak of it. I understand the self esteem stuff and that I'm beautiful no matter what and so on but enough is enough and I live in Phoenix which means its shorts and tank tops by March. Also I have one of the best components to dieting, a diet buddy and fellow Hip Momma. In other words, someone to whine to about how hungry I am. Partners in (hunger) pain.
I can't wait til her first birthday and it's for all the sentimental reasons of course! She is my last baby and my only girl. Princess Hannah is turning one. And the baby fat will be where it should be... on the baby!

Friday, February 5, 2010

The not so perfect toy

I tend to always be on the lookout for the best toy that will keep my little ones entertained for more than 10 minutes and if im really lucky, a full half hour. so every Christmas I trudge out with the best of them searching... Every trip to Walmart/Target ( insert your super center of choice) I always take a cruise through the toy isles thinking that maybe this time I will find the mecca and my little ones will be enthralled with it for days on end. I have never had that luck. From what I can tell not too many of my fellow HipMommas have either. Recently I cleaned up and cleared out the playroom. Throwing away broken things. I call them "things" because clearly its a piece of a toy, but for which toy it is unknown. Anyways, I organized, shelved and decorated a happy place for my 2 toddlers and soon to be toddler-ette. Believe it or not a lot of the toys in there were Zions old ones.(Can we say hoarding Grandma?!? But, hey Thanks!) This revamping of the playroom is probably one of my best momma-moves in a long time. So score 1, make it 10 for the home team. What I have found to be rather interesting is that my kids could care less about all the expensive shiny things in there and prefer to dig out swimming goggles, old football helmets, and golf clubs. It got me to thinkin... even Zion has his pile of untouchable sticks outside in the corner of my yard. Zion is 11 so yes he prefers expensive things like XBox games, etc... But, more times than not I catch him playing with legos & hand made bow and arrows. The simplicity of kids is amazing, they will make ANYTHING fun. Why do we as parents always forget that a 100 bucks later? I can't even tell you that I will never buy an expensive toy again because lets face it, im a sucker for fads! Maybe I will just try to remember to read this post over again before my next outing to Walmart to remind myself that they are already having fun. Until next week...