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Category: Motherhood

Finding Moments of Yes in Motherhood

Disclosure: This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #WellYesMoment #CollectiveBias

#ad Sometimes, I feel myself becoming a mean mom. Just being so negative and automatically saying no. But recently, I've tried to have "Moments of Yes" in both big and small ways. Read about my moments of yes and how I was inspired by Well Yes! Soups by Campbells to not be a "mean mom" anymore. quirkyandthenerd.com

I often joke about being the meanest mommy ever. You know those times when your kid refuses a totally reasonable request, like putting their toys away so they can leave school to go home or leaving the park after being there for an entire morning, and so you have to do the mean mommy act and put your foot down? Well, I’ve started to look more carefully at some of those requests and sometimes even saying yes. And you know what? These Moments of Yes are making our life so much smoother and more fun.

Obviously I can’t say yes to everything. That would mean we’d only go to work and school half of the time, every dinner would be applesauce and french fries and Grandma and Grandpa would be living at our house 24/7. But there are so many things I can say yes to.

(Like letting her ride “trikey” in the house. That is a fight that I have since given up trying to have. The tires are free and she rides in circles while I get things done. It works for us.)

#ad Sometimes, I feel myself becoming a mean mom. Just being so negative and automatically saying no. But recently, I've tried to have "Moments of Yes" in both big and small ways. Read about my moments of yes and how I was inspired by Well Yes! Soups by Campbells to not be a "mean mom" anymore. quirkyandthenerd.com

On the first day of school this year, I had a super cute, matching outfit all picked out for Mac. And then she woke up that morning and decided she wanted to pick her own outfit and that it wasn’t anywhere close to the one I wanted her to wear. Instead of starting the school year off with a fight, I decided to have a Moment of Yes and let her wear what she wanted. (I mean, she looks cute no matter what, right?)

Not only did this help us have a good morning, but it set off a new standard for school this year where, now that Mac is in the big kid room, she can make more decisions for herself. And letting toddlers and kids make their own choices is so important. So I started looking for more Moments of Yes.

Recently, we decided to have soup for dinner. Great, except we all wanted different kinds of soup. So I said a Moment of Yes to Well Yes!® Soup. Usually I would make us all just eat the same soup to make things easy on Andrew and I, but with this line of soups, how could I say no to individual requests? Not only is there something for everyone, but these soups are full of nutritious and delicious ingredients.

#ad Sometimes, I feel myself becoming a mean mom. Just being so negative and automatically saying no. But recently, I've tried to have "Moments of Yes" in both big and small ways. Read about my moments of yes and how I was inspired by Well Yes! Soups by Campbells to not be a "mean mom" anymore. quirkyandthenerd.comI’ve posted before about how we eat as a family of both vegetarians and meat eaters, Well I was able to find something for everyone with these soups. Andrew loves a good Chicken Noodle soup, so his choice was obvious. Mac loves tomato soup, so imagine how happy I was to find Tomato Carrot Bisque. Her favorite soup now has an even more delicious twist with the addition of healthy carrots. And for me? It was almost hard to choose because there were so many vegetarian and vegan options. But I settled on the Sweet Potato Corn Chowder. I’ll admit, corn chowder isn’t usually my first choice. But this was absolutely delicious!

#ad Sometimes, I feel myself becoming a mean mom. Just being so negative and automatically saying no. But recently, I've tried to have "Moments of Yes" in both big and small ways. Read about my moments of yes and how I was inspired by Well Yes! Soups by Campbells to not be a "mean mom" anymore. quirkyandthenerd.com

And you know what? After saying yes to Well Yes! Soups, we had a lovely and fun family dinner taste testing all of the different soups. And as a mom, I could feel good knowing I was feeding my family a soup with non-gmo ingredients, no artificial colors or flavors, and nutritious ingredients. So I encourage everyone to have a Moment of Yes with Well Yes! Soup.

I’m so glad I was given the opportunity by Collective Bias to share my love of these soups with the world. There are so many other varieties that my soup loving family will be trying out. I’m also excited to share two more things about these soups. First of all, there is a great coupon that you can use to try out these Well Yes! Soups. I mean, I think this soup is definitely worth full price, but who doesn’t like to save a little money?

#ad Sometimes, I feel myself becoming a mean mom. Just being so negative and automatically saying no. But recently, I've tried to have "Moments of Yes" in both big and small ways. Read about my moments of yes and how I was inspired by Well Yes! Soups by Campbells to not be a "mean mom" anymore. quirkyandthenerd.comThe second thing is that Well Yes! is currently hosting a sweepstakes with a $500 VISA gift card as a grand prize! Make sure you have a Moment of Yes and enter. That grand prize could mean you are saying yes to even bigger Moments of Yes! Say a vacation? Or maybe a staycation?
#WellYesMoment #Sweepstakes (10/14 to 11/17)

Tell me about some Moments of Yes in your life. Maybe an impromptu outing or a movie on a school night? Maybe it was as simple as a second scoop of ice cream or an extra 5 minutes of cuddles? Let me know what you’ve said yes to in the comments!

To the Parent of the Kid Who Struggles Through Swim Lessons

To the parent of the worst kid in swim lessons:

It is hard to show up to swim lessons or gymnastics class or soccer practice knowing your kid is the worst one out there. You worry and try not to compare, but how can you not sometimes.

My 2-year-old daughter Mac has been in swim lessons for over a year. She loves the water and swims like a fish, which makes her dad extremely happy. He was part of the swim team in high school and is so excited to share his love for the water with her. They still do the lessons where he is in the water with her, making it a special bonding time.

But this lesson session, it has been hard. See, the other kid in the class isn’t a great swimmer. He has fun, but he isn’t up to where Mac is and the other day his dad made a comment about it to my husband.

“She is such a fish in the water. I wish my son was like that.”

And even though he didn’t mean it in a way that he was disappointed in his son, it made me sad.

See, his son and my daughter are taking away two totally different things from these swim lessons.

It feels terrible when your kid struggles and is the worst one. But guess what? Sometimes swim lessons aren't just about swimming. quirkyandthenerd.comMac is an independent, super confident girl and she has been her entire short life. For her, swim lessons are about building up swimming skills. She’s learning to paddle and kick and climb out of the pool. She’s trying out going underwater, jumping in from the side of the pool, and even wearing goggles.

But this other little boy isn’t to that stage. The biggest thing he is taking away from these lessons is confidence. He is working on believing in himself and trusting that he can do it.

He doesn’t need to learn how to put together his kicking and paddling until he learns that he is fully capable of doing it by himself and trusting his abilities.

But I’m going to let you in on a secret: we put our little fish into gymnastics class last year and while the older children learned to do somersaults and walk on the balance beam, my kid ran around just enjoying the gym time.

And I accepted that what she was getting out of the classes was not exactly what we signed up for, but it was still important. She was learning how her body moves in space and how to interact with other children around and how to wait her turn.

So when I look at the differences between the kids in swim lessons or whatever classes my kid is taking, I don’t judge children on their surface abilities. I look further down and try to see what they are really learning.

That kid who is slower than the rest in soccer might be working on his coordination. That girl in ballet who is always a step behind may be working on sequencing skills. Maybe the socialization of a class is the most important part for another child.

Instead of feeling embarrassed or concerned, feel proud with whatever skill your child is working on and look at the improvement in that skill at the end. Swim lessons isn’t just about learning to swim.

It feels terrible when your kid struggles and is the worst one. But guess what? Sometimes swim lessons aren't just about swimming. quirkyandthenerd.com

Tips and Tricks for Using a Nebulizer with Your Child

It is no fun when your child has breathing issues. When you add in a nebulizer, it can be an even bigger pain. Not only do you have to watch your child be sick, but you have to struggle to get them to take their medicine. As someone who has been giving their toddler medicine with a nebulizer for over a year, here are a few tips and tricks that I have picked up along the way.

Using a nebulizer with your child (especially your toddler!) is hands down the worst. After a year of using one with my toddler, here are some tips and tricks I picked up. quirkyandthenerd.com

How I Drink My Coffee On A Busy Morning

Disclosure: This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and the Coca-Cola Company. All opinions are mine alone. #IcedDunkinOnTheGo #CollectiveBias

You know that joke about how moms have to warm up their coffee like 10 times before they are able to actually drink it? It is so true. And with a toddler and being pregnant with another while also trying to get us all ready for a day at work and school, hot coffee just isn’t in the books very often. So on especially hectic mornings, I reach for a Dunkin’ Donuts Iced Coffee.

#ad On a hectic morning, I've started drinking iced coffee instead. Read about how it makes my mornings so much better! #IcedDunkinOnTheGo quirkyandthenerd.com

What to Do When Your Kid Has a Potty Mouth

The other night, Andrew was putting Mac to bed. He came into our room laughing and said

“She won’t stop calling me poop. I told her I liked it when she said nice things to me, like ‘I love you.’ So then she looked me straight in the eye and said, ‘I love you poop.'”

We definitely had a good laugh about it since she wasn’t around, but it made me realize I had to deal with the potty mouth already.

I work with 3-6 year olds. If I had to use one word to describe their sense of humor, it would be “bathroom.” Any sort of bathroom word can spur an entire lunch table to giggles. It doesn’t even have to be a joke. Simply saying “poop” or “fart” is enough for them to lose control. So what do you do about it? Well, there is one trick I’ve learned from co-workers that might not totally stop it, but certainly slows it down.

Bathroom humor. It is a stage all children will go through.  But how do you get them to stop? Well, here is one tip I picked up that may not stop potty mouth completely, but will help it happen less! quirkyandthenerd.com

Save Your Sanity During Toilet Training

The other day, I was commiserating with another toddler mom about the yucky underwear situation. Not to get too graphic, but the underwear that gets sent home a big mess and you either have to toss them out and buy new underwear all the time ($$$) or dunk and flush and dunk and flush and dunk and flush, hoping to get it clean enough to put in your washing machine without having to bleach the washer afterwards.

But I have one thing (a holdover from our cloth diapering days) that saves me money and is easier than the old dunk and flush routine.

Also, make sure you check out the one thing I was missing while toilet training. Once I figured it out and found something to help, it was smooth sailing.

There is one product that I recommend to absolutely every single mother who is toilet training their toddler. It will help save your sanity (and a lot of underwear!) Read about it at quirkyandthenerd.com

The One Thing I Was Missing While Toilet Training

Let me just start off by saying I’ve helped toilet train dozens of children. I worked in the toddler room for four years (that’s where I learned to get your child a potty as soon as they can stand on their own) and spent a lot of time monitoring bathroom needs, setting timers, cleaning up accidents, and generally helping toddlers become successful toileters. So how come I was having so much trouble with my toddler using the toilet? The answer I found was surprising to say the least. (Also, if you are in the thick of toilet training, check out the one product I recommend to every single parent while they toilet train their children! It will save money and underwear.)

I have helped dozens of kids learn to use the toilet. So why was it so hard with my own kid? Once I realized the problem, boy was I surprised! Read about what it was and the one thing that helped me solve the problem. quirkyandthenerd.com

Halloween Books for All Ages

If there is one thing I love, it is the holidays. For me, September through December is the best time of year! I used to be a strictly Christmas loving girl, but I have grown fond of Halloween too (probably because my husband and daughter love it too.)

The other day, my 2 year old daughter’s teacher asked the children what their favorite things about fall were. Most children mentioned the pretty leaves or going to the apple orchard. Mac simply said “Halloween!” And as she is following in my footsteps as a voracious reader, I decided to put together a list of fall and Halloween books for all ages.

(Usually for toddlers, I recommend books that are realistic, but as a holiday loving lady, I have been willing to bend to rules for fun, seasonal books as a sort of treat.)

I love Halloween and I love to read. Naturally I had to put together a list of Halloween books to read during the month of October. From toddlers to adults, there is something for everyone! quirkyandthenerd.com

Power Struggles With Kids

And what if you don’t know you’re in one?

I can’t be the only parent who didn’t realize I was in a power struggle until I was firmly in the middle of it, right? I generally practice what I preach and I always say “Don’t get into a power struggle with your toddler.” And that was all well and good, until one day I realized I was already firmly entrenched in one.

I always say not to get in a power struggle with your toddler. Except then I found myself in one. So what did I do? Find out two things I did and a few ways to put an end to the power struggle. quirkyandthenerd.com

Of course, the onset was one of those bigger things that you aren’t supposed to make a big deal out of *facepalm.* Mac was working on toileting and while it generally was going well, there were times that weren’t. Without being too graphic, she simply wouldn’t do her business on the toilet despite the fact that she knew how and had done it before. It wasn’t really an “accident,” it was more of a “don’t care to do what I’m supposed to do.” And honestly, it felt like she was doing it to make me mad.

Now, of course that isn’t true. Part of the problem is that I was pregnant and didn’t like having to get down on the floor to clean up messes that felt so “unnecessary.” So between that and hormones, it became almost a battle of wills. Some days I would look back and think of what a terrible parent I had been to get so angry over an accident. I just couldn’t understand why she would seemingly choose to keep going in her underwear.

 

My Easy Peasy, 15 Minute a Day Cleaning System

The last time we moved, we went from a small 2 bedroom, 1 1/2 bathroom townhouse to a 4 bedroom, 3 1/2 bathroom house. Talk about a lifestyle change! One thing that worried me was how I was going to keep my new, larger house clean. Let’s face it, I had trouble keeping the townhouse clean. What in the world was I gonna do with the extra square footage?

But then, I sat down a few days after moving in to brainstorm a cleaning schedule that would work and I came up with my East Peasy, 15 Minute a Day Cleaning System. I’m gonna be honest, I’ve been talking to a lot of people about it because I just can’t believe how simple it has been to keep my house clean! Read on to learn how to make your own Easy Peasy, 15 Minute a Day Cleaning System, why it has been working for me, and what I use that helps my cleaning happen so fast.

My easy peasy 15 minute a day cleaning system was so easy to put together. See how I did it and how I keep my house clean in only 15 minutes a day, even as a working mom. quirkyandthenerd.com