Awesome Mommy http://www.awesomemommy.ca Wed, 18 Sep 2013 02:34:15 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.6.1 A Day without my iPhone http://www.awesomemommy.ca/a-day-without-my-iphone/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=a-day-without-my-iphone http://www.awesomemommy.ca/a-day-without-my-iphone/#comments Wed, 18 Sep 2013 02:34:15 +0000 Awesomemommy http://www.awesomemommy.ca/?p=750 I lose my phone on a daily basis. For about 3-4 horrifying minutes and then I find it again and all is well. The other day, I lost my phone and for the life of me, could not find it. Anywhere. It was tragic. I was beside myself. I turned my house upside down to such an extent that it looked like I was cleaning for Pesach. After 4 hours of searching I finally gave up. Well, my husband made me give up because my kids were hungry and playing ‘let’s find mommy’s phone’ was getting boring and seriously bordering on child abuse. After dinner and bath, I put my kids to bed, did one last round of scrounging for my phone that was MIA and went to bed. On time. Without playing Candy Crush.

In the morning, when P woke up, I gave her some books instead of my phone since my frantic search yielded nothing, and she was confused but still happy. It didn’t keep her occupied long enough for me to go back to sleep as per our morning routine, so I forced myself to get up. I spent the most delicious 15 minutes with her cuddling, reading books and getting dressed. Ever since she started going to day-care I don’t get to spend much time with her on her own, and it was seriously amazing. She is usually so over-powered by her high-energy brothers that she just blends into the background in her efforts not to get squashed, plummeted, and stuffed into her brothers’ imaginary jail.

At that point, N walked into P’s room and was shocked to find me there. He immediately interrogated P about the whereabouts of the phone, and was a bit disappointed when she had nothing for him. He then announced that he too wants to be cuddled and parked himself on the unoccupied side of the huge bean bag chair that we were reclining on. L came in last, probably woken by the vigorous giggling that was coming from P’s room, and to my surprise, jumped on top of us shouting “mommy sandwich”… This experience was surreal. Not that I don’t cuddle with my kids, but usually we are sitting on the bean bag chair all huddled in front of my phone listening to the wheels of the bus for the four hundredth time. Squishing their faces and tickling them was such pure joy that I actually forgot how upset I was.

A little while later, it proved to me that not having a phone can render you with some technical difficulties. I wanted to call my husband and remind him that school started a bit later today and that I would need the car for the morning. But I couldn’t. We don’t have a home phone, so calling is difficult without the iPhone. We then had breakfast together, and since I couldn’t check my emails and update my Facebook status, I ate breakfast with them, which my kids found hilarious since they realized that mommy too likes Captain Crunch cereal (don’t tell my personal trainer).  For my family, they only experience an phone-free mommy once a week, on Shabbos, but since this day has such a different routine anyways, they treat it as holy and as a day where they get their mommy and daddy all to themselves without the interruptions of life.

The rest of the day went pretty smoothly despite by lack of communication with the world, but I realized how much I like hanging out with my kids, listening to them talk among themselves and try to problem solve on their own. I realized how much they love my attention, my real full-blown attention without me simultaneously typing an email. It’s crazy how involved we get with our technology-based lives, that looking up from the phone becomes an inconvenience. Don’t get me wrong, I was extremely happy to find my phone, but was super careful this morning not to check my emails until the munchkins were off at school. And you know what the funny thing is? The world was just fine without me for 12 hours. Life went on, emails went unanswered and Facebook statuses weren’t updated, but my kids were ecstatic. They were my priority for 100% of the time that they were home and no email is worth that.

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Parenting by Osmosis http://www.awesomemommy.ca/pareting-by-osmosis/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=pareting-by-osmosis http://www.awesomemommy.ca/pareting-by-osmosis/#comments Wed, 17 Jul 2013 14:27:55 +0000 Awesomemommy http://www.awesomemommy.ca/?p=741 It’s hard for me to believe that I have been a mother for over 5 years. That is pretty scary. What’s scarier is that it took me this long to understand that children do not come with instructions. That’s right – it is something so trivial, but I really thought that parenting by osmosis would yield me amazing, obedient, cute, smart and happy children. Boy I was wrong. Motherhood, to my great surprise, was not like riding a bike. Once I made certain mistakes, I didn’t learn from them, I kept making bigger and bigger ones and more often. I got to the point where I wasn’t sure how to handle my kids without punishment, fighting and lots of crying. This wasn’t the way I had imagined spending my first few years of motherhood. Not only was I not enjoying my children, they were definitely not enjoying me. Something had to change.

I heard through the grapevine that there was a very popular parenting course taking place in July and I was determined to take it. It was very intense (30 hours of class in 4 days is a lot for someone who has been out of school for a while), but it was by far the most valuable advice I have ever heard. Don’t get me wrong, it was not a quick fix by any means, but it gave me the tools to work on myself and my parenting skills, without damaging my children in the process. I am so grateful to this woman and feel seriously privileged to have been able to take part in her course; I would give her my house. Seriously.

But now comes the hard part. Implementing all the things that I learned turned out to be harder than I thought. My kids obviously resisted the new rules of the house and I wanted nothing more than to revert back to my old ways, but I held myself back and thought about what was happening. What I realized is that parenting is hard. Not only is it hard, it is a full time job. It is not a hobby that you can pick up and put down when you are in the mood. I feel like nowadays, not only are children treated like a hobby, but babies have become the newest and hottest accessory. In Hollywood, celebs are having babies left, right and center, and its makes everyone else think “if they can do it, so can I!”

I think that mothers (myself totally included) have to check into reality and realize that their children are not their hobbies, babies are not their dolls, these are real people, who crave attention and need to be taken care of regardless if you are in the mood that day or not. We would never not show up to work one day because we felt like having mojitos on the patio instead, or turn in a bad report cuz we were too lazy to do it properly so why do we feel like it’s okay to do with our kids?  I think every mother out there needs to take a parenting course. Not because I doubt anyone’s parenting skills, but because children don’t come with a manual like most other precious things in life, and shockingly, you don’t even need a license to have one.

Trust me mommies, you don’t want to wake up in 6 years and feel like you have no idea what you are doing.

Happy Wednesday!

 

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Fads are Bad News http://www.awesomemommy.ca/fads-are-bad-news/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=fads-are-bad-news http://www.awesomemommy.ca/fads-are-bad-news/#comments Wed, 17 Apr 2013 02:52:47 +0000 Awesomemommy http://www.awesomemommy.ca/?p=716 So my hiatus is finally over, and I am back on track to ranting online blogging. My seminar went amazing and the new program is building tremendous momentum, but about that another time. I couldn’t help but notice, that my Facebook feed was clogged by the new Dove ad that has recently surfaced the web. It’s everywhere.

Now – I am not saying it’s not true, that women are more critical of themselves than strangers are of them; I just want to remind everyone that it is still an ad. An advertisement is a paid public announcement – and in this case – it is not for development of women’s self-confidence and general wellness, it is for a product; a soap, a shampoo, a cream. Dove isn’t saying “You are naturally beautiful – don’t bother buying any of our beauty-enhancing products” now are they? No. They are not. They are saying “You are beautiful – now go buy our soap”.

It is insulting and arrogant.

As a master manipulator, my 4 year old does this just as good as the PR gurus at Dove. L told me that he loved my new shiny rain boots and that I looked pretty in them. And then he asked for a lollipop before dinner. Classy. It upsets me that Dove thinks that by complementing women, they can get us to do what they want – buy their product. In terms of quality, I don’t know how much better or worse Dove is than any other company that makes similar products, but they are the only ones that try to win us over with ads that borderline malicious flirting.

My Facebook feed was full of phrases like “Dove really defines beauty”, “Everyone is unique and beautiful in their own way” and “women shouldn’t be objectified”.

Here’s some food for thought…

Dove and Axe are owned by the same company. The same people who designed the sketch ad also designed the following:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I9tWZB7OUSU\

How’s that for not objectifying women and focusing on inner beauty… yeah I thought so.

The advertising industry, as we all know and been warned about since elementary school, feeds off people’s insecurities and physiological blemishes. It is fuelled by horrendous values, disgusting character traits and the need to fit in. Unfortunately, knowing is half the battle. It pains me to think that if I was more self-confidant and strong minded, I wouldn’t need my new, shiny Hunter rain boots, a steaming David’s tea in my hand, a Bugaboo stroller and an iPhone 5 (fine a 4S, but still…)

Fads are the way the world turns, but if you are not careful, you can get sucked in to a point of no return, where you think that Dove cares about you more than just another customer. A world where Hunter rain boots are a must-have rather than simply an impulse buy. A world where you get lost in the ‘newest and coolest’ and forget about the things that really matter. Who is rich? A person that is happy with what he has. Happiness is the art of taking pleasure in what you have. Unhappiness is the art of focusing on what you don’t have and need to buy in order to be happier, skinnier, prettier, taller, more successful, etc…

This was an un-paid advertisement brought to you by an insulted mommy of three, who, due to lack of time mostly, is forced to focus on her inner beauty.

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I’m all famous and stuff… not actually http://www.awesomemommy.ca/708/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=708 http://www.awesomemommy.ca/708/#comments Tue, 19 Mar 2013 19:32:09 +0000 Awesomemommy http://www.awesomemommy.ca/?p=708 Hi Everyone,

Hope you are all having a wonderful cold and snowy Tuesday afternoon! Here’s a link to a fantastic article, written about MOMMYtalks.  Hope to get back to blogging soon!

ps – who’s excited for TARGET?! 

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Here is why I was MIA… http://www.awesomemommy.ca/here-is-why-i-was-mia/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=here-is-why-i-was-mia http://www.awesomemommy.ca/here-is-why-i-was-mia/#comments Tue, 26 Feb 2013 00:57:38 +0000 Awesomemommy http://www.awesomemommy.ca/?p=698 Awesomemommy is proud to present MOMMYtalks… 

This Awesome seminar in April has fabulous speakers and the talks will be on general mother wellness, vaccinations, time and money budgeting, and other topics that we, as Mommies, all want to know about. It will feature the brand manager of M for Mendocino, who will be giving a workshop, and other amazing women.

Tickets are $18.

The ticket gets you a seat at the event and a business card ad in our book that will be distributed to everyone to promote and inspire all of the Mommies. There will be FREE babysitting in a proper day-care facility run by certified early childhood educators, a fancy, catered, sit-down lunch, a book signing with Marina Nemat – the author or Prisoner of Teheran, AMAZING prizes for a gigantic raffle, and really fun swag bags!

To register for this awesome event please go to www.mommytalks.ca.

Thanks for bearing with me these few weeks!

 

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Leave of Absence http://www.awesomemommy.ca/leave-of-absence/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=leave-of-absence http://www.awesomemommy.ca/leave-of-absence/#comments Mon, 28 Jan 2013 03:10:19 +0000 Awesomemommy http://www.awesomemommy.ca/?p=691 Hi All,

I wanted to let you all know that I will be taking a short, but very necessary leave of absence from AwesomeMommy. No, I am not writing a book, but I am working on something so AWESOME and HUGE that it will knock everything that you would expect from this blog out of this world!

I am so so excited about it, and can’t handle the fact that it’s a secret… for now.

PS

I will still post when I can’t resist to tell you about how N has learned to manipulate me into pretty much anything with very advanced compliments like “Mommy, you’re so soft… I love you best!”, and how P, who hasn’t stopped eating since she was born, has been classified under-weight by her doctor, and how L has truly grown into his own wisdom and has become impossible to parent… but more about this at another time.

Stay tuned for updates!

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Happy New Year! http://www.awesomemommy.ca/happy-new-year/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=happy-new-year http://www.awesomemommy.ca/happy-new-year/#comments Tue, 01 Jan 2013 03:48:18 +0000 Awesomemommy http://www.awesomemommy.ca/?p=683 It would be too obvious for me to write a whole new post New Year’s Eve, so instead I will bring you the highlights of last year…

By Far… The Funniest Post:

Picking Up Other Mommies

This phenomenon – otherwise called as ‘mommy dating‘ – is an awful experience you will have to endure in order for your child to have playmates. I was one of the first of my friends to have kids, and therefore, did not have the luxury of hanging out with my friends and their babies. But I had to do something. My kid was getting bored and, more Rantimportantly, I was desperate for an adult conversation – one that was to be spoken in a pitch a few octaves lower than what I was used to. Read More

 

The Most Serious Post:

Liars Anonymous

L, my almost-4-year old, has become a great story teller. Unfortunately, most of the stories he tells aren’t exactly factual. After yet another fib, I was frustrated and began wondering where he was learning this artful skill. A friend of mine suggested that I was his greatest teacher. I was shocked and offended. I am not a liar! And then I thought about it. Apparently I lie to my kids. A lot. Be it white lies or not, I decided to count the number of lies I told my children in a day.

Forty six.

Read More

 

The Mushiest Post:

Happy 4th Birthday L! Read More

 

Best Rant:

I have nanny-envy. And van-envy. And a clean house-envy. And children-who-eat-envy. At least once a day, I catch myself saying “if I only had a nanny…” or “if I only had a van…” most often than not, both those sentences end with “… I would be a better mommy.” Read More

 

What were your favourites?

Happy New Year’s everybody and don’t let your toddlers get into your holiday cocktails. Hypothetically speaking of course.

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Slacktivism http://www.awesomemommy.ca/slacktivism/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=slacktivism http://www.awesomemommy.ca/slacktivism/#comments Tue, 18 Dec 2012 15:23:56 +0000 Awesomemommy http://www.awesomemommy.ca/?p=674 As the holiday season rolls around and Movember comes to an end, everyone’s news-feeds revert back to reflecting their lunches, tales of failed blind dates and atrocious political opinions. Mustaches get shaved, mo-necklaces are tucked away, along with people’s passion to fight prostate cancer. Generally speaking, awareness campaigns as a means to itself, like the breast cancer coloured bra campaign, irk me the wrong way. Not because I don’t think it’s important to know that breast cancer exists, but because knowing and not doing anything about it is like having the cure and not telling anyone. Posting your bra colour on your Facebook status, sending a chain e-mail, liking and sharing a link, are all great examples of slacktivism. This is something that is fake. Not real. A half-a$$ attempt at change, knowledge, power, etc.

The real pleasure of making a difference is huge. Anyone who has ever done anything to feel this pleasure will know there is nothing like it. It is long lasting, satisfying and concrete. Only down side to it is that it requires you to actually do something other than click “like” on Facebook. It requires effort, putting yourself out there. It is anything but comfortable.

So what drives us to seek the counterfeit versus the real pleasure? Can’t be laziness, most of us get up every day at the crack of dawn to either go to work or take care of our kids. It can’t be the fact that we do not want to help the world, because again, most of us aren’t heartless, narcissistic freaks that don’t care about children with terminal cancer, people with AIDS, endangered exotic animals, healthcare and politics. We are just comfortable. Comfortable with our lives, our level of involvement and we do not want to ‘rock the boat’. We do not want to tip the scale in any way so that we will have to put out. We do not want our lives affected, be it for the good or the bad. We are content to settle for what we have as opposed to gamble for something more meaningful.

I guess I just want to say kudos to all the people who grew mustaches and actually raised money for prostate cancer research. Kudos to the people who ran in a breast cancer marathon. Kudos to everyone who has made a difference. And to everyone who hasn’t, there is still time. People are affected by things all around the year. You don’t have to wait till it’s something-awareness month. If you see a problem, make an attempt to fix it – shave your head (for money), run an event, make a YouTube clip, tell your story.

I’ve been on a kick to change the world since the shooting in Newtown and I promise to  get back to funny eventually, but something changed in me that day. I try to find the funny in the every day even though my mind wanders to those lost souls. I try to laugh when N, in response to me asking him what kind of cake he wants for his birthday, replies “a BIG one!”. But it crushes me to think that there were some  Newtown parents planning their kids birthday parties. It breaks my heart on a totally different level now that I have kids of my own. I have mixed emotions of guilt, despair, fear and anger, and slowly I’m trying to get back to normal. If you are a little messed up too, that’s okay, but if you found a way to make it better, spread it. We all need it.

 

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Knowledge is Power http://www.awesomemommy.ca/knowledge-is-power/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=knowledge-is-power http://www.awesomemommy.ca/knowledge-is-power/#comments Mon, 17 Dec 2012 15:30:32 +0000 Awesomemommy http://www.awesomemommy.ca/?p=668 This Sunday I was privileged enough to attend a seminar titled ‘Taking Charge of your Fertility’. It was presented by a good friend of mine to a group of women who as far as I know, were not having any trouble conceiving, but were simply interested in learning about the subject. The seminar re-introduced me to some very familiar pictures of the female anatomy and provided very pertinent information which my sex-ed teacher failed to tell me. I was shocked to learn about most of the things presented in the class and was horrified that I was not aware of most of them. Unlike ‘non-sciency’ people, I have an Honours degree in Biology, and therefore felt even worse about being in the dark about the array of information that I simply did not know.

In general, I find that people, myself included, only seek information about a certain subject on a need-to-know basis. For example, people read books about the art galleries and museums of Paris, only before going to visit Paris, read up about ADHD only once their child is diagnosed with it, seek marriage counselling once there is a problem in their marriage, and look into how their body works only once there is a problem with infertility.

I am very lucky to be a part of a circle of friends, and really the community at large, who seeks wisdom, whether it is on infertility, social media, the public education system, nutrition, parenting or match-making. I think that taking the time to learn about things that don’t necessarily solve an immediate problem for you personally, is a great way to change the world. President Obama said last night at a memorial service for the town of Newtown, Connecticut that he will do everything in his power to learn about the problems that are facing American youth in order to fix them. It is obvious that once you are learning about something in order to fix a problem, you are already behind. Trying to prevent something from happening, or at least taking the responsibility to be educated on a certain subject, whether it is for your own benefit or the life of others, really can make the world a better place.

I learned things yesterday that I have already shared with a bunch of my friends, drastically changing their lives. I did that by attending a 45 minute seminar that I was not obligated to go, didn’t get credit for going, and that my friend was not being paid to teach. I think that if we widen our perspectives on what it means for something to be ‘relevant’ in our lives, we can drastically impact the status quo.

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Feminism ruined my life… perspective http://www.awesomemommy.ca/feminism-ruined-my-life-perspective/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=feminism-ruined-my-life-perspective http://www.awesomemommy.ca/feminism-ruined-my-life-perspective/#comments Wed, 07 Nov 2012 16:56:06 +0000 Awesomemommy http://www.awesomemommy.ca/?p=650 I wish I could say that I have been MIA due to some cool reason like “I am writing a book” or “I have been selected to go to space on a top secret mission”, but I can’t, because, like most of you, I am not writing a book, and don’t have anywhere close to the strong enough gag reflex that is required by NASA protocol. What I will say is that I have been consumed by vicious colds, carpool, potty training, and taking care of nap-dropping little monsters. Every time there is a major halt in my day to day routine, I start to question whether or not I am happy with what I decided to do with my time.

The work or stay-at-home conundrum has been plaguing me ever since I decided to have kids and is exaggerated in my mind every time my kids get sick or are on vacation from school. Sometimes it makes me feel like an awful person, because my mother always says that she wishes she never had to work and could spend all her days with me and my sister. But I don’t feel like that. What’s wrong with me??

I decided to look further into this issue and found that after feminism really kicked in, in the 1930s, women were said to have penis-envy and were encouraged to be more feminine. Voila… Pleasantville and your typical 1950s housewife. That outlook only lasted about 10 years before there was an en masse return to work. No wonder men think all women are indecisive psychopaths – we can’t make up our mind. We have been flip-flopping backwards and forwards from home to career, back to home and then back to career. And the worst part about it is that we’ve never been perfectly happy.

Being a housewife could leave a woman thinking “is this all?” This is something that is very real for me personally, because people always tell me that I am wasting my education and my brain being just a mommy. On the other hand, a career these days has become a calling. A career choice is no longer what you do to make money, it’s who you are. Careers have gone from being a means to an end (money), to the end itself. The reason why I think people get so emotionally attached to, and therefore frustrated with, their jobs is that they are expecting it to fulfill them, actualize them and create within them a sense of identity and purpose.

 

Ok great so either way we’re screwed?

No…

I think that it’s important to have a balance, but not necessarily in equal parts. No one has to choose a static place on this mommy spectrum. Some days I am totally on the left side because all my kids are sick, and all I do ALL day is change diapers, cook meals and clean up messes, whereas other days, I leave my kids with babysitters and work all day. I don’t think the answer to being happy with what you choose to do is about WHAT you do, it’s HOW you do it.

Practically, I think that living your life with meaning, regardless of what you do, can grant you happiness. If you have that perspective in life, it won’t matter if you are a CEO of a Wall Street Bank or CEO of the kitchen sink… as long as you are directing what you do towards meaning. To positively approach your career, you just have to recognize that your job is not your identity. It does not define who you are; rather what you do with your income defines you. Trust me, you are not the only lawyer, doctor, programmer, teacher, social worker out there, but you defiantly may be the only one who gives 10% of what you make to charity, or shaves their head for a funky fundraiser. To stay positive at home, I think that one has to be as ambitious about their home-life as one would be about work. Staying in pjs all day, something I am totally guilty of, would never fly at work, so why would I do that at home? Taking your kids to the park, and then sitting on the bench and texting all day is just like handing in a very poorly done report. Just because you don’t have a boss breathing over your shoulder, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t put in the effort. And one last thing, don’t forget to use your talents! Are you a good singer? Then you serenade your kids till there’s no tomorrow. You’re an artist? You draw and make amazing art projects with them. You like to bake? Then you go and make the best damn chocolate chip cookies ever for your kids’ bake sales.

What I think that I, and most people, need to remember is to add on a Y-axis to the mommy spectrum – the meaning. No matter what I choose in the long run, each day has its presence on the spectrum, and as a result  each day also has a corresponding point on the more important axis, the meaning. At the end of the day, your happiness will not depend on which side you lean more to, but on how much purpose you choose to infuse into what you are doing.

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