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Category Archives: rants

10 Rules Toddlers Live By That Are Designed to Break Your Spirit

Someday, with any luck, my kid will read this post and thank me.

And also one day, with any luck, my kid will read this blog and thank me.

10) Once a routine has been established and you’ve both settled into it, that’s when the toddler will decide the routine is no longer valid.

9) Diaper blowouts will always be more likely to occur in the car seat than at home. This doubly applies to infants.

8) Events you schedule in advance at certain times suddenly and inexplicably become the prime napping time.
eviltoddler
7) The more tired you are, the less likely it is your toddler will go down for a nap without a fight.

6) Toddlers (and infants) have adult sized farts, adult sized poops, and generate as much laundry as twelve adults.

5) The best place for a tantrum is always in public.

4) No matter how clean your house is, they will find something gross to stick into their mouths, like dead flies or year-old-raisins from under the couch cushion.

3) They refuse to understand the concept of “no” until they’re old enough to loudly, and forcefully, repeat it themselves.

Toddler octopus

Toddler octopus

2) Sharing is caring, but toddlers are selfish little miscreants.

1) Your comfort is always, always, inversely proportional to theirs. This means they’re the most comfortable when you’re standing up and less when you’re sitting down. If you’re actually laying down, you better get used to being perfectly still and ridiculously quiet, like you’re hunting wabbits.

Don't move. The baby's sleeping.  Source: http://dailypicksandflicks.com/

Don’t move. The baby’s finally asleep.
Source: http://dailypicksandflicks.com/

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Tale of Two Pregnancies and the Government Shutdown

I haven’t blogged in a while. I blame it on the government shutdown. You want to know what I’ve been up to while our elected officials are busy eating hazelnut chocolates and playing GTA V (which is what I’d do if I was furloughed)?

Well, for one, this:

photo

Before you get all excited and tell me your potty training tips, I should disclose that I’m not actually potty training. I did think about starting potty training soon, which is why I bought this ridiculous Fisher-Price musical potty. Of course, it never got used for anything besides play because it was just too fun of a toilet. I mean, this thing lights up while making pretend-flushing sounds and exclaims “YAY!” as if you’ve just won an all-expense trip to the Bahamas for you and four of your girlfriends, no kids allowed.

Because the musical potty was so fun, it was never used as a potty but was instead slowly assimilated into Tiny Boss’ toy collection. Until that fateful day.

Seriously? I'm going to start using kid toilets. They're WAY better than ours.

Seriously? I’m going to start using kid toilets. They’re WAY better than ours.
Check out http://www.ctadigital.com/item.asp?item=3016

I know. It’s my fault. I’m terrible about putting the diaper on Tiny Boss right away. But we’ve never had a changing table, which means I always change him on the bed . . . and the bed is just so comfortable . . . and what’s the harm in letting him roam free for a little bit anyways? He’s got to air out those nuts, right?

corndogfail

Found this when I looked up “funny testicles” in Google images. I’m hoping it’s Photoshopped. And you’re welcome.

No good deed goes unpunished. I’m trying to let Tiny Boss air out for his own comfort and instead he craps on my bed. But to my credit, I leaped up as best as a pregnant woman can do, grabbed him and plopped him on the Yay Toilet. He obligingly pooped a little –  just enough to make a mess in two spots instead of one.

So I ended up having to stick Tiny Boss in the playpen while I tried to clean the poop up as fast as I could before the dogs caught on that there was something exquisitely interesting and tasty on the bed. In my haste, I got poop on my pant leg, so the sheet-changing, potty scrubbing, and poop disposal were all done with one pant leg rolled up, West-coast style.

LL Cool J probably had poop on one pant leg too.

LL Cool J probably had poop on one pant leg too.

That was week one of the government shutdown.

Week two began with me rubbing baby shampoo all over my pregnant belly.

In my defense, take a look at this bottle from the good folks at Shea Moisture.

awfulpackagedesign

Did you see the Wash & Shampoo part? Yeah? Me neither!

Seriously. I saw “Argan Oil” and “Calm & Comfort.” Sounds good to me!

When I started to pour it out, I noticed the consistency was definitively not oily, but I thought, what the heck? Maybe it’s one of those oil creams or something. What’s an Argan anyways? A quick glance at the ingredients list didn’t help me figure out this was for washing hair either. I mean, this stuff is made from sugar beets, for crying out loud. That sounds like it’s way better for stretch marks than it is for cleaning your hair.

But alas, as I started rubbing it into my stomach, I realized it was most definitely not oil. I got up to pour some water on my stomach in the shower and of course at that very moment, Tiny Boss decides to step down from our mattress and slip, banana-peel-style, on a blanket on the floor and land face first.

slipandfall

10 minutes later, I’m still comforting him in the rocking chair all the while with a thick layer of shampoo underneath my shirt.

But at least I tried, right? I was so vigilant about oiling my stomach and preventing stretch marks the first time around. Now I’m lucky if I can even get some shampoo on there once a week or so. Which brings me to:

Pregnancy #1 vs. #2

First time pregnant: Prenatal yoga three times a week. Walking every day with the dogs.

This time pregnant: Does toddler wrangling count as exercise? Fighting with the dogs over food left on the counter.

——-

sneeze

First time pregnant: Doing kegels every day. I would try to squeeze them in (see what I did there?) whenever I was at a red light.

This time pregnant: Cursing myself every time I sneeze that I didn’t do more kegels.

——-

First time pregnant: Waking up at 3am and cooking up a storm to satisfy intense hunger.

This time pregnant: Waking up at 3am, putting Tiny Boss back to sleep, feeling hungry, and going back to sleep. For two more hours.

——-

First time pregnant: Meditating as part of my plan for a natural birth.

This time pregnant: Meditating so as not to strangle my spouse/kid/the lady in front of me at the grocery store with 16 items in the express lane.

——-

First time pregnant: Gave up coffee, tea, and other caffeinated drinks.

This time pregnant: A little concerned about my caffeine intake and its effect on my unborn child; more concerned about how not having my morning coffee will affect my already-born child.

——-

First time pregnant: Religiously doing kick-counts every night.

This time pregnant: Realizing right before I fall asleep that I haven’t done kick-counts, so instead trying to remember the last time she moved. Thinking I could get up and drink some more coffee if I really can’t remember the last time she kicked (kidding!)

535

So there you have it, folks. My life the past two weeks during the government shutdown. I blame Obama for the poop incident and the Republicans for the Argan oil shampoo, because I’m fair like that.

Someone’s Got To Go From This Bed

bedforone

A couple of months ago, I decided we should upgrade our tiny Ikea sofabed mattress to “something better.” We had been sleeping on it directly on the floor with Tiny Boss since he was old enough to crawl and fall off the bed. Now my back was finally starting to ache as my pregnancy progressed, although it was mostly from being cramped into one corner while Tiny Boss occupied the center of the bed like a (tiny) boss.

“No more!” I declared. “We shall upgrade!”

The upgrade turned out to be a somewhat random Sealy foam mattress we picked up at Sears. Would we like the boxspring and bedframe for only $100 more and free shipping? Well, sir, what I would like and what is actually feasible are two entirely different things. Obviously, this man did not have kids.

We had to forego having a real bed, and settle for another mattress (albeit a larger, fluffier one) because Tiny Boss, who sleep-crawls all the time, would probably end up falling off it in the middle of the night, possibly hurting himself and, more importantly, waking up.

keepitreal

The purchase turned out to be a curse.

No, it’s not the “gassing off” of the foam mattress – even my pregnancy-sensitive nose can’t smell the fumes emitting from the foam material, something that is supposedly so toxic that they were rejected by those responsible for acquiring beds at NASA or something.

So what’s wrong with our mattress?

  • Every time my husband moves, the whole bed moves. Since I’m not from California, I automatically think we’re having an earthquake; Tiny Boss wakes up.
  • It’s so comfortable when I’m the only one in it, which just makes sleeping in it every night even worse.
  • It comes with an anti-mom curse. If Tiny Boss is sleeping in it already and I sneak in next to him, he’ll wake up. Doesn’t matter if it’s during a nap or at night, if he’s had a long day playing at the park or if he’s been dosed with Benadryl (kidding) – he’ll wake up.
  • What was “ultra firm” in the store turned out to be pudding-soft in our house when all three of us sleep on it at once.
  • The dogs really want to lay on it. They come in at 5am and stare at me, willing me with their big brown dog eyes to let them on the bed until I throw some pillows at them, and then they just lay on the pillows instead and make them smell bad.

There are some upsides to the purchase though. For instance, two years ago we had bought a set of queen sheets by mistake, and now we finally have a mattress that fits it!

The realization that one of us needs to be evicted from the bed came to me last night as I lay miserably on the hard, tiny crib mattress we had placed on the floor to buffer Tiny Boss’ frequent falls of the bed. I’m tired of not being able to stretch out fully. It’d be nice not to wake up with little feet in my face. And I can’t even remember the last time my boobs were fondled by adult hands.

Quite possibly THE BEST ONESIE I have ever seen. Source: http://www.countercouturedesign.com/cock-block-onesie/

Quite possibly THE BEST ONESIE I have ever seen. Source: http://www.countercouturedesign.com/cock-block-onesie/

So new resolution: I’m going to buy a toddler bed. I placed some on our shower registry so that I can use the 10% off coupon that comes in the mail for all the stuff that doesn’t get bought. Soon thereafter, we’ll transition Tiny Boss into his own awesome Cars or Dora toddler bed, which he’ll totally love sleeping in. And then I’ll get awesome sleep, right?

You can stop laughing now.

Note to those who have a “family bed” – when you go mattress shopping, insist on trying out all the mattresses on the floor, not on the box spring. Pull them off the frames yourselves if you have to! Then make sure everyone – mom, dad, kids – gets on the bed and rolls around for at least five minutes to get a good sense of how that mattress will work for you at home. You’ll thank me, even if the sales person doesn’t.

What I’ve Learned From This Heat Wave

Pregnancy and heat waves go together as well as, say, toddlers and nap time. This is our second week of 100 degree weather here in LA, and I’m about to start stuffing my bra with ice packs.

No, not like this. Source: http://thebeautybrains.com/

No, not quite like this.
Source: http://thebeautybrains.com/

To deal with the heat the past few days without using the air conditioning too much, I’ve been alternately escaping to the coastal areas with my toddler as well as distracting myself by doing things like having lunch with friends I haven’t seen in a while. Neither turned out well.

Eating With the Enemy

First, lunch with a friend. Pro tip: when you’re pregnant, be sure you have lunch only with friends who have been pregnant themselves, or lived in close proximity with someone who has been pregnant, or have dedicated their lives to researching pregnant women. Do not lunch with anyone else, particularly perfectly fit gay men who never sweat, even if they have been among your closest friends for years now. Case in point:

Me: “Ok, Dan. I’m not super hungry, so you choose where we go.” Mistake #1.

He didn't even have the courtesy to at least be fat.

He didn’t even have the courtesy to at least be fat.

We head downtown, park in Pershing Square and get out of the wrong exit, which means we end up having to walk two extra blocks before getting to the hottest restaurant in downtown LA. And by “hot,” I don’t mean trendy-hot, I mean like doing-Bikram-yoga-wearing-a-garbage-bag-hot. Like you just made a pregnant woman walk two blocks in the noontime heat hot. And like no air conditioning hot.

Dan: “This place has the best salads!

What I say: “You know when I go to Jack in the Box, the person at the drive through window says ‘Hey, it’s you again!’ when she sees me?”

What I think: F* salads!

But whatever. I order the exact same salad he does.

While eating our food salads, I complain that we’re outside and there’s no air conditioning.

Me: “You know, when you’re pregnant, your basal temperature increases by about 10 degrees.” (Not true, except most definitely true in my case).

Dan: “Well, I don’t know anything about pregnant women.” He looks at my plate. “Other than they eat a lot!”

We ordered. the. exact. same. salads. Ok, so maybe I just ate mine faster.

But Dan is my best friend, and best friends are forgiven for pretty much anything, so we’re having lunch again in a couple of weeks, only this time I’m making him eat hamburgers while wearing a parka on a DTLA rooftop restaurant.

Tropical Shitstorm – not just on the drink menu at Islands Restaurant

Tiny Boss and I went to one of my favorite beaches so I – err, he – can cool off in the perpetually freezing Pacific ocean. He poops at 9am, right before we get there, so being the noob mom that I am, I think, “Great! He’s not going to poop again for hours! Let’s just put him in these awesome Speedo swimming trunks with the built-in diaper.

Maybe it was all the sand he ate, or maybe it was the hash brown I got from Jack In The Box (“Hey! It’s you again!”), but some time between running into the ocean, trying to steal other kids’ sand toys, and ignoring his adorable playdate, he took the mother of all dumps.

Source: http://www.juxtapost.com/site/permlink/340daca0-4b7a-11e1-a002-8d5f0b3c19cb/post/please_wait__diaper_loading_adorable_funny_baby_diaper_cover_9_99/

Would have been helpful.
Source: http://www.juxtapost.com

I don’t know this though, so I decide to take his wet clothes off in the car, at which time a large piece of poop falls out of his trunks as I was pulling them down. Tiny Boss immediately, and efficiently, stomps on it and grinds it into the seat.

I look into his pants, and discover that it looks like someone’s mashed about half a dozen Reese’s peanut butter cups inside them. But that wasn’t the biggest problem, really. The biggest problem with pooping your pants at the beach (besides pooping your pants at the beach) is not so much the poop, but the sand.

sand

I’m with Anakin on this one.

Sand gets everywhere. It turns your awesome swim trunks with the built in diaper into something akin to a skin-hugging cat litter box, only with not enough litter to neutralize the turds, so you get a nasty combination of poop, sand, and poopy sand clumps. You can’t wipe the poop off because there’s so much sand, and toddler butts and nuts don’t need exfoliation.

Panicked, I throw his pants out the window after wiping his foot off with the clean part. I wasn’t prepared for a poopy diaper, so I can’t find my wipes. I resort to rinsing him off in the parking lot with our water bottle. This doesn’t go over well with Tiny Boss, who wants to continue to watch the iPad in the car and stomp poop, ala Lucille Ball.

Come to think of it, toddlers would make great wine-stompers.

Come to think of it, toddlers would make great wine-stompers.

Then Tiny Boss decides he wants to drink the water, but I can’t give it to him because I accidentally touched the bottle opening to his butt crack. This refusal causes even more distress.

So I take this poopy, sandy, crying, naked boy over to the showers. To calm him down, I talk to him while washing him off in the cold water, explaining that he has a poopy butt that we need to wash off. It’s at this time I realize that I’m probably grossing out all the other moms and kids waiting in line for the showers. I avoid eye contact, slink back to my car with Tiny Boss, pick up the no-longer-awesome swim trunks, and drive home.

Tomorrow, I’m just going to turn on the air conditioning.

How Asian Dora Got Her Groove Back (Well, Not Yet)

girl

“If you look at your son’s nipples and there’s no line through them you’re going to have a baby boy.” Wrong. I’ve double checked Tiny Boss’ nipples – still no lines, but I’m going to go with the ultrasound tech on this one.

“If your husband is getting fatter during your pregnancy, you’re going to have a girl.” No comment. But I don’t think he’s getting fatter. I mean, less skinny.

Out of all the pregnancy superstitions that I’ve heard regarding having a baby girl, here’s the only one that seems true: a baby girl steals her mother’s beauty.

Because lately I’ve been feeling utterly … blah. All those ridiculously cheerful pregnancy websites are totally wrong. BabyCenter has this hilarious article – from which I quote, “Believe it or not, your guy may be loving your new physique. Men tend to see the sensuality in blossoming breasts and soft curves. Plus, the sight of your pregnant form is a constant reminder of his virility.”

Pretty sure the sight of my “pregnant form” to my husband is less a constant reminder of his virility and more of the inevitable upcoming sleep deprivation.

As for me, I don’t feel sexier because of my new bustline or my hormones. My hormones generally make me feel angry, turned on, or like eating chocolate covered gummy bears, sometimes all at the same time.

BUT LEAVE THE GUMMY BEARS!

But leave the gummy bears.

The growing bustline might have made me feel sexy, except for the fact that my nipples seem to be in some sort of growth competition with my boobs and everything below my boobs is growing at a similar rate, if not faster.

The full head of hair? I cut my hair early on in pregnancy. At first I loved the ease and not going to bed with a head full of wet hair (ain’t nobody got time for a blow dryer), but now the added fullness is making me feel like Dora the Explorer.

Image

Just imagine an Asian Dora and that’s pretty much me.

And forget the alleged glow – my skin actually gets worse during pregnancy – I get bumps on the back of my arms, and super dry skin everywhere else. I also kind of look like Neapolitan ice cream, with my sunburned shoulders, pale midsection (I am not wearing a bikini pregnant) and tan legs from dragging Tiny Boss to water parks and beaches on my days off. Mmm, ice cream . . .

icecream

And my maternity clothes. Sigh. Can someone please tell Motherhood to stop making so many flower prints? I see them all over my maternity underwear and tops. They’re not sexy, unless you’re really into the Anne of Green Gables look. And yes, I know there are lots of nice maternity clothes, and even some sexy f*nighties, but I really don’t feel like spending five billion dollars on clothes I’ll wear for less than a year.

So what’s the plan to get my groove back? Well, tattoos and piercings are out of the question (they’re off limits during pregnancy due to the risk of disease) and I already colored my hair, something I avoided for almost two years due to my first pregnancy and breastfeeding. I think I’ll go thrifting tomorrow. Maybe I’ll find some awesome, ginormous, non-flowery, vintage print t-shirts that I can wear for the next three months. But don’t worry, I won’t be buying any secondhand f*nighties!

10 Signs You Need a Break From Your Kids

sleepy

This lack of sleep thing is catching up to me, and since I’m unable to think coherent thoughts that are longer than the span of one sentence (see? did that even make sense?), I’ve decided to do a list. So here are 10 Signs You Might Need A Break From Your Kid(s):

10) You accidentally ask for a venti “wawa” at Starbucks, because that’s what your kid calls “water.”

9) You call your spouse up solely to yell at him for something he did or didn’t do.

8) You gave up on your diet because the food you order has to be compatible for picky eaters. Ordering a sald at a restaurant for yourself feels luxurious.

7) You either miss having sex, or wish your partner would hurry up so you can fall asleep. There’s no happy medium.

6) A spa day would be awesome, but at this point you’ll settle for a haircut.

5) Driving by yourself and listening to your own music in the car as loud as you want feels like a vacation.

allbymyself

These are tears of joy, mind you.

4) You know the words to more Yo Gabba Gabba songs than on the current top charts.

3) You’ve seen more photos of “Attachment Parenting Ryan Gosling” than just of Ryan Gosling.

2) When you finally get a break from your kid(s), your first impulse is to start cleaning the house, rather than take time to pamper yourself.

stfu

1) Someone wakes your kid up from his nap and the first thing that (almost) escapes your mouth is, “I will cut you!” Yeah, I’m looking at you, neighbor with a Harley. Oh, and gardeners, UPS/FedEx, those guys with the leaf blowers, people who talk too loudly on their cell phones in public. I WILL cut you.

Yeah . . . I think I need a break.

Tiny Boss Eats His Own Poop – Been There, Done That

I’m sorry. I know it’s been less than a week since my last blog post about poop. But I just have to share this because writing is my therapy, misery loves company, and . . . I just gotta say it, my baby stuck his own poop in his mouth today!

It was completely my fault too. We had just gotten back from lunch and Tiny Boss was sweaty, so I took off his diaper to let him air out before putting on a new one. As we relaxed on the mattress on the floor (which is now the bed we share with Tiny Boss), enjoying the breeze of the ceiling fan, I started getting sleepy . . . so sleepy.

And I jolted awake. I don’t know how long I fell asleep for. A minute? Five minutes? Tiny Boss was sitting besides me, calmly eating Cheerios. I looked around to assess the carnage. Room looked fine. I looked around specifically to see if he pooped, since he seems to like pooping in the most inconvenient of places – he didn’t. So I thought. But now that I was awake and he had an audience, he did saunter over to a nearby pillow and proceeded to pee on it. Fine. I got up to get a diaper. And when I came back, he had put something in his mouth, which he spit out immediately.

No such luck.

No such luck.

It looked like a squashed Snickers’ mini. Only how did one get in our room and how did he unwrap it?

I already knew the answer before I saw it. Two perfectly formed logs, stealthily camouflaged amidst a brown puppy dog towel. We had bought the towel at Target; at the time, it was the cutest thing ever. Now, I vow not to have anything in any shade of brown in our room that could potentially conceal turds.

The cursed towel.

The cursed towel. Don’t ask me if I washed it yet.

I scooped Tiny Boss up, ran to the bathroom sink, and washed his hands. I hesitated – am I supposed to wash his mouth out? We’ve tried to teach him how to spit, but haven’t been successful. I decided to use my fingers to “brush” his front teeth and washed his lips and chin, trying not to freak out.

Then I rapidly went through the four stages of disgust – shock, revulsion, more shock, and resignation – followed by some frantic Googling. Apparently, this is pretty common, since it’s the first thing that popped up when I started typing “baby ate p . . .”

photo

Thanks to the Illinois Poison Control, I started to feel a little bit of relief. Apparently, this is quite common, and not harmful (in small amounts), and one should remain calm and carry on unless the child starts exhibiting symptoms like “persistent/continued vomiting, diarrhea or fever.”

God bless these people.

The Illinois Poison Center even has a blog about the calls they get about children and infants eating poop, and ranks the type of poop in order of frequency of calls they get:

1) Human

2) Cat

3) Dog

4) Other

I don’t even want to think of what “other” poop kids will try eating.

They’ve also gotten calls about kids eating used condoms, used tampons, live cockroaches, live goldfish, backwashed enema fluid . . . yeah. I’ll stop.

But check out the IPC blog. There’s tons of useful information in there, and most of it is easy to read, even for those with weak stomachs, like my husband.

* * *

It’s been four hours since the poop-tasting, and Tiny Boss seems fine. He finally napped, but not without doing this first:

Yes, again. The black thing is a measuring cup. Does anyone else wash their kids with kitchen utensils?

Yes, again. The black thing is a measuring cup. Does anyone else wash their kids with kitchen utensils?

Good thing the weak-stomached husband will be home soon.