REALISTIC MOM SELFIES part DOS

Now if you have been following along my blog you may remember when I did a little demonstration on Realistic MOM Selfies! I was looking for something in the archives of my blog today and I stumbled upon that blog. It made me laugh. So I decided to share a PART 2. Because being a parent is ridiculous and hilarious.

 

Alright, so you are cruising social media while avoiding adult responsibilities and you see a selfie. Hmm, wow she just had two kids. She looks great!

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Well, thank you. I try.

 

But in the spirit of living my life honestly. I must confess, my days are not all wearing red dresses while drinking cocktails with beautiful women at a wedding in Cohassett, MA. A wedding so beautiful it was in a bridal magazine. So I had to brush my hair that day! Mine as well document that shit.

 

No, some days are messy. Some days you rip your pants open but just have to keep moving forward. Some days you cry in your car. There are no real rules for motherhood. Or life I suppose.

In the spirit of celebrating the moments of motherhood that are real, here are some realistic Mom selfies I took for you!

 

I call this one: FRIDAY NIGHT!

 

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FUN WITH COWS ON FIELD TRIPS!

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WHO REALLY KNOWS WHAT TO DO WITH YOUR HAIR
WHEN YOU ONLY HAVE 5 MINUTES!

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TRYING TO TAKE A PICTURE OF YOU AND YOUR CHILDREN

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GLAD I CAN TURN EXHBIT A into EXHIBIT B in 10 minutes.
At this point, it’s basically a fire drill.

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HOW WET I AM EVERY NIGHT AFTER BATHING MY CHILDREN

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WORK FRIENDS KEEP YOU SANE. 
WELL, AS SANE AS POSSIBLE

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MOM VACATION
“I don’t know about you, but I’m feeling 22.”

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HAPPY AS A CLAM THAT I AM SITTING IN THE CELL PHONE LOT AT THE AIRPORT. DRINKING COFFEE AND READING MY BOOK. A WHOLE 40 MINUTES OF NO ONE INVADING MY PERSONAL SPACE.

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TRYING TO GET ALL THE CHILDREN
TO LOOK AT THE PICTURE IS A FOOL’S TASK

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THE COW DOES SAY MOO!

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Stay weird my friends.

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From the Mouths of Nurses: CHILDBIRTH 101

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Childbirth is this big black hole of unknown to an expecting Mom. You can read books, seek advice from women who have experienced it, and prepare in every way possible. Yet, no one can actually tell you what is going to happen in there. It’s a crap shoot.

For me personally, this created some anxiety for me 1st pregnancy. I understand the science of reproduction. I’m a smart woman. I read 32,745 books while I was pregnant. I packed bags. I pinned massive boards of pregnancy shizz. Yet, knowing that I was going to have to human jump out of my lady business. Well, it took some real processing.

So I assume there must be some preggos out there who could feel the same way RIGHT now! Wasting time worrying about whether they are going to poop when they have the baby!

Here is the good news sweetie.. it doesn’t matter. Half your body fluids seem to have made a mass exit out the bottom end, so I really wouldn’t waste any time worrying about it. I couldn’t tell you if I did or not. When I pulled that giant baby out of myself, he took a huge crap on me. The sticky tar stuff that comes out first. And it was beautiful. More beautiful then I ever could have imagined.

Poop isn’t going to ruin your day. It won’t even be something you remember.

Now even though the previous statements are true, pregnant ladies are still going worry!! Mama bear mode is deep and it’s real. Hormone roller coaster got you worrying about dumb crap that you will make fun of yourself for later? Ya, it happens.

Then it dawned on me, I’ll enlisted some smart individuals who sit in the front row every day to share and give us a little look behind the curtain. I went to a MA state school, so of course a large portion of my friends are nurses and teachers. Impressive people they are. They bring lives into this world like it’s going out of style.

MEET MY LABOR & DELIVERY NURSING HOMIES:

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COURTNEY, RN, WHNP

5 years as an RN, 3 years as a nurse practitioner. 

 

 

 

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TRISTA, RN, WHNP, CNM

RN 2007-2011 while attending graduate school then started a career as a certified nurse midwife.

 

 

 

 

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ASHLEY, RNC-OB, BSN

6.5 Years on the labor and delivery floor

 

 

 

 

I believe you have to be a special type of person to work in labor and delivery, so I asked:
WHAT ATTRACTED YOU TO THE FIELD OF LABOR AND DELIVERY?

 

COURTNEY:

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“Mom’s and babies! I’ve always know that women’s health was what I was interested in. I like all aspects of nursing, but it was the chapter of my nursing text book that I would read ahead, or read in my spare time, because I was so interested. Then I went back to graduate school and got a master’s degree in Women’s Health.”

 

TRISTA:

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“It was the first birth that I attended in nursing school that convinced me L&D was the field I wanted to concentrate on. Once I saw that first baby born and the joy and love on the new parents faces I was hooked. The dad started bawling at which point I lost it and started crying with them. Being able to be a part of that experience and helping new babies into this world is such a privilege. I can’t think of anything else I’d rather be doing to make a living.”

ASHLEY:

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“Labor and delivery has always been my dream nursing job. I was fortunate enough to get my internship in labor and delivery and hired after graduation. Labor and delivery is considered a specialty and it is very different from med-surg nursing or any other type of nursing. I enjoy caring for women and also being able to relate my personal life to do what I do. When I first started labor and delivery I did not have any children but dreamt of having my own one day. So learning and caring for pregnant women I feel like somewhat helped me prepare for my own personal experiences. Now that I have my own and expecting a second in a couple weeks, I feel like I’ve gained so much more knowledge that is beneficial for my patients. I can’t imagine doing any type of nursing. This is one of the most memorable, exciting and sometimes difficult time in a families life and to be apart of that time is so rewarding.

WHAT IS YOUR ULTIMATE GOAL DURING LABOR AND DELIVERY?

COURTNEY:

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“Healthy Mom and healthy baby. Period.”

 

 

TRISTA:

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” My ultimate goal is to leave a birth feeling like I did everything in my power to give my patient and her SO what the wanted from their birthing experience. So many people come in with such detailed birth plans, and to be honest, you’re just setting yourself up for failure- especially first time moms. You’ve never experienced labor contractions until you are in labor! How can you know how you will handle them and how you will cope until you are in labor?! My advice is to be educated about your options, have a “plan” in mind, and then go with the flow and be open minded. Try your best to deal with the pain and know that we are here to support you, but if you change your mind and give in to that epidural…it’s OKAY! You will not be judged and you are just as strong of a woman as that other woman down the hall screaming in pain. So I guess my goal is to make sure that no patient of mine ever feels defeated by their labor and to know that I did everything possible to keep both mom and baby happy but healthy.”

ASHLEY:

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“My ultimate goal during labor and delivery is to build a rapport with the family I am caring for and make their experience the best I can. A lot of women come in and expect their labor to go a certain way. As it is my goal to make everything go how they wish, no two labors are exactly the same. Sometimes things come up and the plans may have to change. I try to always comfort the patient through each step and explain why certain things need to be done.”

 

I tried to save you the 5 hours you will spend on Pinterest pinning articles about “What to pack in your hospital bag!” by asking them…
WHAT ITEMS WOULD YOU SUGGEST NEW MOM’S
BRING IN THEIR HOSPITAL BAG?

 

TRISTA:

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” I personally love when my patients are jamming out to music, a little dancing and swaying always does a laboring mama good. Camera is a must as well as comfy clothes and socks. We supply some pretty fancy grippy socks and our Victoria secret mesh panties are always a hit, but once the baby is out you’re going to want your own undies, socks, pj’s, etc. I also suggest brining your own pillow…the plastic hospital ones much to noisy! We supply toothpaste, toothbrush and soap but it’s worse than what you get at a hotel so plan accordingly! Other than that, just a car seat and an outfit for your new baby to go home in.”

ASHLEY:

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” Every hospital is different on what they have available for patients at different times of the day so I recommend bringing your own big cup for water and snacks as during the night after you deliver you may be starving but the kitchen isn’t open! You will be given the “sexy mesh underwear” which are great. I recently had a patient who brought her own depends to use which I thought was a great idea! Bring a good comfortable nursing bra and just comfy lounge clothes. You don’t need a million outfits for your baby. I would just bring your outfit for going home and a blanket. Diapers, wipes and formula, is bottle feeding, will be supplied to you while your in the hospital but make sure you have those items for when you get home. Other necessities would be a camera, video camera (if that’s something you’re interested in having), cell charger, toiletries, slippers, and your own pillow! The hospital pillows aren’t the best.”

Give it to us straight:
WHAT DO YOU WISH YOU COULD SAY TO A FIRST TIME MOM WHO IS PREPARING FOR CHILDBIRTH?

 

COURTNEY:

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“Try not to over prepare. The best plans always have to be altered. That being said, learn as much as you can from credible sources. Most doctor’s offices and hospital have childbirth classes.”

ASHLEY:

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“Talk to your nurse. We are here for you. Tell us what you’d like to have happen, what you’re scared of and what should you expect. We will do our best to meet all your requests but please keep an open mind as sometimes things may need to be done that are in the best interest of you and your baby.”

 

 

It may sound crazy, gross, TMI to some people. But I’ve heard friends talk about being worried about pooping during childbirth. I think it a waste of time to worry about something like that, but let’s see what the ladies who will be in the front row wearing a poncho have to say:
DO YOU JUDGE WOMEN THAT POOP ON THE FLOOR WHEN THEY GIVE BIRTH?
COURTNEY:

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“The poop falls into a bucket at the end of the bed. Nobody sees it, nobody cares.”

 

 

TRISTA:

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” Um, pretty much every one poops. If there is poop in the rectum at the time of birth, I’m sorry Mama’s, but it has nowhere to go but out when the babies head comes down. And it is whipped up just as quick as it comes out.”

 

ASHLEY:

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“Absolutely not! And I try very hard to keep it discreet so no one in the room, even you as a patient, knows it happened. We aren’t going to just leave it there for everyone to see! But if there is anything “in there” that baby’s head is going to push it out. Don’t worry. You’re not the only one.”

 

All new Mom’s should know this ahead of time:
DO YOU THINK BREAST FEEDING IS EASY TO DO?

 

COURTNEY:

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No. It’s really hard. Thankfully there are plenty of people with so much experience and expertise available to help. Use all the resources you can.”

 

TRISTA:

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“Breast feeding may LOOK easy to do but it can be extremely difficult so don’t get discouraged and stick with it! It’s so much easier in the long run to pop the babe on the boob in the middle of the night than get up and try to warm a bottle half asleep while holding a screaming baby. It’s better for baby and it’s better for you! But it’s not for everyone so don’t kill yourself trying to make it work if it’s not. Some moms and some babies just don’t have the best anatomy for breastfeeding and this can be a struggle. (Flat/inverted nipples, tongue or lip tie etc). I’ve seen some serious postpartum depression from moms who planned on breastfeeding their whole pregnancy and then it didn’t work out. So of course I advocate for it, because after all…breast is best, but there is no judgement for women who choose not to breastfeed or it just doesn’t work out.”

ASHLEY:

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“There’s a lot that goes into breastfeeding. Some babies just get right on and “make it look easy.” The mothers nipples, size of breasts and desire to breastfeed have a lot to do with breastfeeding as well as the baby’s gestational age and ability to latch. This is new for the mom and new for the baby. It’s a learning process for both, even if it’s your second or tenth child. It takes teamwork between you and your baby. You have to learn what works for both of you. And the nurses and lactation consultants are there to help you along the way. Stay positive! You can do it.”

“Time to shut off the TV darling life partner who I am due to have a baby with, I need to read Britt’s blog outloud to you.” -What my pregnant friends will say. That’s right, I’m talking to you HARLAN. Take a knee, we have to talk about this birth team plan:
WHAT IS YOUR ADVICE TO A BIRTH COACH?

 

COURTNEY:

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“Support the Mom. That the number one thing. And remember to eat and stay hydrated because if you feel crappy you’re no help to anyone and adrenalin will only take you so far. Have a look at what’s going on down there during the birth, it’s not as scary as you imagined. That being said, if you start to feel lightheaded, or see stars, or feel that ringing in your ears, sit down cross legged on the floor. Nobody has time to catch you if you pass out.”

TRISTA:

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“Birth coach should be somebody who you are the most comfortable with and somebody who can calm you down, not piss you off. Of course our hubbies can do the later but I think it’s very important for them to be a part of this magical experience. Maybe a sister. But no way would I want my dad or any other family member in the room. My husband was the only one there for both my births and that’s what I wanted. I actually got mad at him for just TELLING his family that I was in labor. I didn’t want people calling and texting every hour or hanging around at the hospital waiting for the baby to pop out…that just adds more pressure and stress to any already difficult/painful situation.”

ASHLEY

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“Be there for the mother. This is about her. Not about what you want. She is in that bed feeling the pain and exhaustion. Be courteous- if she needs to try and sleep, be quiet. If she can’t eat, don’t eat in front of her. She may yell at you one minute and then want you to hold her hand the next. These are normal emotions of labor. Don’t take it personally. You are there for her for a reason. Keep that in mind.”

 

So there you have it. You don’t have to listen to me. I’m just somebody’s mother! But I would put some thought into what these ladies have say. They are there to support you and they welcome people to the world every damn day. Nice work ladies. Proud of all of you.

Preparing Your Dog for New Baby

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Everyone’s world gets turned upside down when a new baby is brought home. Now, it’s important as a new Mom to not forget our other creatures that we love so much. More specifically, our dog pals. The most successful way to transition our furry friends to having a baby in the house is to start prepping during pregnancy.

Think ahead for the dog’s sake!
Bringing a new baby home is a large change for any animal. Eventually every one will adjust to the new household dynamics, but why not try and make it as smooth as possible?
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  • Prepare him for his space to be invaded.

Touch the dogs ears. Play around with his tail. Toddlers do not know boundaries. Try to get the dog comfortable with a loving invasion of privacy.

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  • If the dog’s sleeping arrangment or eating arrangement is going to change due to the new addition. Try and change it during pregnancy.
Don’t wait for baby to show up to start feeding the dog in a separate room that now has a door. Think ahead of how the day to day will run in the household. Instill these practices while you are pregnant so there is less dramatic change the day baby shows up.
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  • Prepare yourself mentally that they may possible be very sad. Maybe your dog will lay on the bed all day and look like he is about to record a country album. Maybe he won’t care at all? It’s really a crapshoot.
  The dog of a married couple who got the puppy before they started procreating, is most likely to sulk for a while.
You know the dog I’m talking about.. Not mentioning any names, cough bandit.
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Your practice baby. The first creature you kept alive together.
Bandit did not understand why I couldn’t take him walking a couple miles every day. I tried to look up how to say, “this new creature I brought home, tore my vagina and I can’t exercise” in dog language. In the end Bandit just laid on the day bed and looked like his first boyfriend had dumped him for the first couple months of Ben’s life.
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  • Have your partner bring home a onesie or blanket that the baby has used during your stay at the hospital. This is a pretty consistent tip any pet specialist would recommend. Anything to make baby and baby dog’s first meet and greet more successful is worth doing. What’s the downside?11063845_10100125003534347_4175338407918012361_n-2
  • Try to give them extra love whenever you get a chance. Try and put yourself in his shoes! This just happened:IMG_5010

 

The most important piece to remember is that  big life transitions take time.

It took a full year for Bandit to really process that this small person was not leaving. That this was his new life. Don’t worry though! Ben & El Bandito eventually became the best of friends.

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by the second baby Bandit thought he was the Mother.

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My First Guest Blogger: Anchored in Alaska

I started up a guest blog. Because I’ve got hoes in different area codes. I happen to some how have the privilege of knowing people who are doing very cool shit. I love people across the country. From Cali beaches all the way across to Folly Beach, SC sunsets. Love is all you need. Little pieces of my heart is everywhere. From Savannah, GA all the way up to Cape Cod summer nights. I love Texas fitness coaches. Some have stopped to check out an Alaskan island. Others who go to dangerous places to serve our country.
So let’s check somewhere out!
This post is from Anchored in Alaska. Check out her blog. Coast Guard wife checking out the world.Teaching kids and being awesome. Always proud of her. But always secretly wish she would come back so we could drink wine and watch Netflix on Thursdays. She regularly texts me pictures of bears in her backyard. So you may want to check it out.
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Only in Alaska. Only in Alaska.

Only in Alaska. Only in Alaska. Words I find myself saying more and more often, the longer that I am here. It has been 1 year, 6 months and 22 days since we have left “the lower 48.”

I am sure some of the unique qualities of this beautiful island can be found other places, but this is the first I have been exposed to such a different lifestyle.

Remote Island + Alaska wilderness = Adventure

When my husband told me that we were getting transferred he broke the news to me in a… unique way.

DH: “So we got our orders…..we are going to a Pacific Island.”

Silly Me: “WE ARE GOING TO HAWAII!!!”

DH: “Well, not quite…we are going to Kodiak, Alaska.”

He was ecstatic…I was not quite jumping for joy, as my visions of surfing some of the best waves in the world (because I can do that….hah!) and drinking umbrella drinks (more like it) quickly vanished from my head. I soon came to terms with the amazing adventure that was in store for us (and wouldn’t change this for the world).

That was when our 6,000 mile road trip and 4 year adventure began :)

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I understand when people ask stereotypical “Alaskan” questions. Especially since Alaska is always an afterthought on a U.S. map. Usually scaled incorrectly and squished in the lefthand corner. No wonder there are so many MISconceptions. Alaska is NOT an island, but it does have 2,670 islands that help make up the state! Kodiak Island is about the same size of the state of Connecticut. I just think the lower 48 is jealous of Alaska’s massive size.

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Some other misconceptions:

  • “Oh my gosh, how do you deal with no light half the year?” (I dont…)
  • “Have you met an Eskimo.”  (you mean an Alaska Native?)
  • “Do Eskimos really live in igloos?” (…really?…)
  • “Have you seen a polar bear?” (Seen, yes. Currently share the island with them, NO.)
  •  “I could never go there – IT’S SO COLD!” (Kodiak actually has warmer winters then most of new england and the mid-west…)
  •  “Can you really see Russia from your house?” (….again, really?….)
  • “Do you have to use an out-house to go to the bathroom?”  (It is 2016 and yes I guess I will spoil myself with the convenience and luxury of modern day plumbing.)

YES some of the most intelligent people I know (college graduates with six figure incomes), have asked me some of these questions!

Yes, I get PAID to live here, it is called a PFD. It took months to really sink in. This state wants ME? In Massachusetts you had to pay the state for everything!  A license for your town beaches, your dump (and you had to bring it!), your DOG! When we got here we weren’t use to all this freedom that it felt awkward. I can drive my 4-wheeler around the woods? Wait, I can carry a gun on me?

My next door neighbor is a Kodiak Bear – so yes, that is kind of the State of Alaska :)

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Alaska Aviation System “Nearly 82% of Alaska communities are not accessible by road, making aviation more than a convenience or a luxury – aviation is essential in the Alaskan way of life (http://www.alaskaasp.com).”Just here on Kodiak Island there are seven villages located remotely.

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Kodiak Island a Rainforest – YES and Rainforest.  In order to be considered a rainforest it has to receive between 98 and 180 inches of precipitation, including snow. Kodiak’s rainforest is a temperate rainforest, as opposed to a tropical rainforest. I sure didn’t think that I would find a rainforest in ALASKA – or be living in one. They said pack rain gear….sure ok…umbrella √, hunters √, raincoat √. WRONG. It rains SIDEWAYS here! For a WHOLE season! Rain gear is what you put OVER your clothes, and if your use an umbrella, you are a tourist 😉

There is also a different philosophy here. In the lower 48, when it rained – everything STOPPED. If you changed your plans, or stayed in because it was raining. My gosh! you wouldn’t get anything done! Here in Kodiak we do just about everything in the rain. Go for hikes, fish, errands etc. We aren’t made of sugar after all :) 

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XtraTuf boots, a fashion necessity. What started out as the essential fisherman footwear has turned into “the must have” for many Alaskans. These boots are worn every which way. With shorts, jeans, skirts – you name it.

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If you want fresh food, look in your backyard. Considering your food comes in on a barge, your best bet is to be as self sufficient as possible. Currently we have an extra freezer just for the salmon we caught, King Crab legs, Buffalo, Grass-fed beef (from a local rancher, where you buy 1/2 the cow), Chicken we raised, ptarmigan (state bird), and deer. We have yet to get a mountain goat!

This year we are excited to put up a greenhouse so we can have all our own fresh produce. Locals also barter their items or sell them at local farmers markets. Who knew that EVERY part of a chicken was worth something? From the egg, to the chicken, down to its poop (fertilizer)!?

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I thought I knew coffee, and then I moved to Alaska. The coffee at the locally owned coffee bars here in Kodiak will put any corporate owned coffee chain to shame. Between the quality of the beverage, food and atmosphere you can’t go wrong. The good news is I know what good coffee is, the bad news is my caffeine intake has significantly increased!

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“Java Flats” in Kodiak, AK.

Its no wonder Alaskans like their coffee! With a whole season of rain and the summer where the sun doesn’t set till midnight, everyone needs a little extra pep in their step. There sure is beauty to both seasons. There is magic in the night sky during clear winter nights. On these nights you can catch Aurora (Aurora Borealis) dancing through the sky – also known as the Northern Lights. 

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The American Bald Eagle. One of the most majestic animals. Our national bird. When I first moved here and saw an Eagle, I was in awe. Jaw dropping beauty. These enormous birds, only feet away, stretching their almost 7ft wingspan right in front of your eyes!

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Until you have to live each day worrying that same beautiful bird might fly right in front of you and nab one of your precious puppies (or chickens). Here in AK even a rabbit is bigger then my dogs! From foxes, to birds to bears everything is out to eat them!
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Apologizes for the graphic nature of this picture

No one ships to Alaska! your new best friend is AMAZON PRIME. If you weren’t an internet shopper before – you are now. Now when I dare to venture to a new online store, before I even get my hopes up I look at its shipping policy. Lesson learned quick – No one ships to ALASKA!

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Small town with a  sense of community. I live in a town with 1, yes 1 stoplight. There is one, two-lane road from the “town” of Kodiak to where we live – “outside the city limits.”

With a simple road system comes different kinds of traffic problems, flooding, mudslides, and horses….

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Coming from cities with endless selections of restaurants and bars it sure is eye-opening when you have a handful to choose from. Even though there is a lack of restaurant/bar selection there sure isn’t a lack of flare. There is a bar for everyone. You have your dive bar, dance bar, after-work vise bar.

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You know your in the “Frozen North” when you need these signs!
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It sure was a culture shock when I walked into my first bar here and saw babies and dogs welcomed inside!

♥Anchored in Alaska

Check it out: Anchored in ALASKA the BLOG! 

NO seriously. Do it.

Disclaimer: I did not ask permission to post her blog. But I’m going to go ahead and doubt that she will sue me. I think she really wants Ben and Jack to go to college. So I’m banking on that.

 

 

T, because you are my first guest blogger, I’m sending you a gift! It’s really time to start sisterhood of the traveling sweatpants. These sweatpants have known unlimited amounts of adventure! It has to be sweatpants. A pair of jeans fitting an entire group of friends correctly is outrageous.

 

 

 

 

IMAGE CREDITS: ANY PHOTOS NOT LISTED BELOW ARE PHOTOS ©BY: ANCHORED IN ALASKA
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OHHHHHHH TOODLES!

Hot dog hot dog hot diggity dog. Now we’ve got ears, it’s time for cheers.

Oh the Mickey Mouse club house! How I currently loathe you. We don’t even watch a lot of TV. But when it’s 5 PM and I’m trying to cook dinner and every one is trying to climb back up in my vagina, Ya… I turn on the TV. It’s called “witching hour survival mode.”

It is unanimous in my house that the only TV show that should exist is The Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. It is toddler crack. I turn on the clubhouse at times to buy myself ten minutes to make coffee. When I come around the corner with my warm cup of goodness, I have to chuckle to myself. They look like a couple of crazy people at burning man. Both hypnotized by the colors, one with no pants, another with fluff in their hair, both unaware that they had soiled themselves. Yet so happy.

I don’t get why people let their kids watch TV all the time. Or just leave the TV on all day in general. I’m not judging you. I just feel like you are missing out on a good opportunity. I purposely don’t put the TV on. So that when I am dying and need rescuing. Or to go carry in $200 worth of groceries in the rain and not have people trying to escape every time I go in and out. That’s when you put it on! Then it works like a wizard. Well at least that’s what happened for me. But every kid is unique, blah blah..

But in my house if you want to please the inmates you always put on Mickey.

“Do you want to watch Thomas?”

“No I’ll watch Mickey”

“Do you want to watch Nemo?”

“No I’ll watch Mickey.”

“Do you want to watch Elmo?”

“Mickey.”

Now if you are in the 1% of the world that has never seen Mickey Mouse Club house, I’ll catch you up to speed:

Basically, it’s babies first glance at stereotypical TV sitcom characters.

Mickey and Minnie are that couple you’ve known forever and have been together since high school. The people who are blowing up your newsfeed with pictures of hiking and apple picking. Marshall and Lily, if you will.

Donald is Mickey’s dumb best friend.

Daisy is the stereotypical hot girl.

Goofy is that person who is always at social events but no one is even sure who really invited him. I mean, he’s a dog who has a pet dog.

Is any one else concerned that Pluto doesn’t speak? Every one else get’s to be a talking animal. Yet he’s still just a doggy dog. Is he really a kid on a back pack leash? Hm. We may never know.

Pete is that over zealous guy that you always see randomly at social occasions. Needing to be loud. Maybe a close talker. Maybe even a sweaty hug.

Now the character I would really like to talk about in this baby fantasy world is Toodles. Toodles is a machine-friend that brings them anything that they could possibly need in any sticky situation, anywhere, at any time.

toodles

You need a bicycle pump? You got it. You need an extra car seat? Toodles has your back. You want a mystery tool that you didn’t even know would better your life? Um, Yes please. All these friends need to do is shout “oh toodles!” to get this kind of service.

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Now, I know what you are thinking…  Why in the world am I putting all this thought into the social dynamics of imaginary children’s show and what their robot friend does for them? Fair question.

Maybe it’s because it’s 4:00 AM and both my toddlers have lost their way and believe that it is the beginning of the day. Mostly because they pooped and instead of the Dad changing them, he brought them in our bed and threw them on top of me. He didn’t “realize they had pooped” I found out this morning. Hmm… no judge is going to believe that story.

In the co-sleeping vs. crib debate, we don’t even get to weigh in. Our vote doesn’t count because it is decided for us. My kids like their cribs. When I try to get them to lay down with us as a desperate last attempt at sleep, they usually just slap me in the face and giggle for as long as I can stand it. “Okay ahhh I’m up. I’m up.” Therefore, if you remove them from their rooms, they assume we are at all systems go! Day begins.

Or maybe it’s because the coffee has not even started to kick in yet. You know the type of morning that you don’t realize until hours later at 7:30 AM that you have eyeliner make up all under your eyes and you look like a serial killer. Like wow, your kids really love you for you. They could give a shit if you look downright murderous, as long as you keep fillling their red cup with milk. Don’t hand them a blue cup though. That’s betrayal.

You see what kind of parenting morning I am talking about?

The kind that you drag your bed comforter down the stairs with you and the children. So you can wrap yourself in it and drink coffee while you work on waking up.

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You get the picture. People will step on your neck to do a sweet jump over the couch. 4 AM is the worst time. It’s a time I don’t want to stay up until or get up at. It is a time for slumber.

So in my delirious Mom haze I started thinking about all the times this week that I needed Toodles to come and bring me some shit. To help me with my #momproblems. I’ll give you a few examples:

  • 10:15 PM  Sunday night: I have just gotten out of work and I am alone in a dark parking lot. It is Winter in New England. It is so freezing that I’m pretty sure my nipples have frozen,fallen off, and rolled down the street. There is ice all over my wind shield. I opened my Jeep door to grab the ice scraper.  A memory flashes across your brain. Yesterday your two year old was carrying it around the driveway. You grabbed it from him once you got every one to the mud room. Set it down next to the coat rack. Dammit. Dammit. Dammit. You can clearly remember saying to yourself, “Gotta remember to put that back in the car on my way to work.” Then continued beasting every one inside to get them down for nap time. Noooo!

OHHHH TOOOOOODLES!!  I’m using my sons snack cup to de-ice my windshield. You mind dropping me off an ice scraper? That would be great thanks.

 

  • Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Various times: Peeing your pants.

OH TOOOOOOOODLES!!! I need new pants. That sneeze took me by surprise and I was not able to effectively cross my legs and sit down in preparation. I already used my emergency Jeep pants yesterday. Hook a Mom up my friend.

  • Most days: Every type of mess you could imagine.

OH TOOOOOODLES!!! Get the hose!

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  • Friday NOON: Took my kiddos to the new discovery center in my town. Hip hip hooray for learning. Spent two hours there. The tides turned when we left this kid heaven. My one year old was so tired that he was like a lazy, droopy, 28 lb. sack on my hip. My two year old was feeling pre nap michevious. Once we walked out of the building, he proceeded to try and escape me at all costs. We were about 200 yards from my vehicle.

I had to catch one, while holding one, and my stupid big purse I brought with me. So toddler #1 takes off. Toddler #2 is clinging to me like he will never love another woman in his life. I capture #1 by the back of his hooded sweatshirt as he is bolting across the ice covered grass field. I attempt to pick him up. He is screaming at me now. I’m waddling forward with one on my hip and simultaneously picking up the other one while standing on an icy grass area.  Cursing them under my breath. Why are you both so large? My one year old is 28 lbs and my two year old is 32 lbs. Ridiculous!

Finally as my sciatic nerve felt like it was going to rocket blast out of me. I was like. “Okay buddy, time to walk like a big kid.” This suggestion was met with #1 now needing to cling to me for dear life. Ahh, okay so we swap and #2 goes down. Now holding an exhausted one year olds hand and walking across a parking lot can be quite time consuming. He was moving super snail speed. On multiple occasions he even tried to sit down and take a break.

So I pick baby # 2 back up and again I say to the other, “Com’on buddy. Time to show me your a big kid and walk with Mom.” Immediately he throws himself on the ground and is crying face down into the paved side walk. A man walks out of the school and looks down at said crying kid. I point at the screaming 2 year old and ask the guy, “Hey is that your kid or mine?” The screaming child takes off his winter hat and throws it to make sure I know that I am not funny.

After making sure captain meltdown is in not in any harms way, I strap sleeping one year old in his seat. He smiles at me and says, “I poop.” I’m like of course you did buddy. I scrape my two year old off the pavement. He yells “I go outside!! I go outside! I stay here. I stay here.” in my face the whole time I’m strapping him in. He attempts the stiff as a board, back  constriction technique as a last resistance. Ultimately, he gives in and starts singing along with Marty the Moose.

I start to drive and think hateful thoughts to my past self for deciding it was too much work to pack up the stroller just to walk in and out of a building today…

My thoughts are interrupted by my two year old, “Mom I did a poop too! Don’t worry, I clean it.” Then I looked in my rearview mirror just to see him smiling and pulling his hand out of the back of his jeans. A whole hand covered in poop.

Long story short, TOODLES.

GET A ME A LASSO, LARGE COFFEE, UNLIMITED CLEANING SUPPLIES and possibly a XANAX.

  • EVERY DAY ALL DAY:

OH TOOOODLES! Lastly, can you get a  time-freeze gun? So I can go back to this moment forever and remember them just like this. Poop and all <3

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So I guess in the end, I’m Toodles. Every Mom is Toodles. I need to bring, gather, find, make work, prepare, and rise to the occasion for my little friends. No matter where we are or not matter what sticky situation we find ourselves in. Today, two people need me to get through their day. Therefore, I will always be there when they need me. ♥

I had no idea

it would be

this much.

I had no idea

I could handle it.

I had no idea

how beautiful

it all actually

is.

-Tyler Knott Gregson-

 

 

Two Childhoods Combined

“We argue more than we used to.” I said, confused and defeated.

“No offense, but you guys did get married pretty fast? Do you think that may have something to do with it?”
Staring at my pretty blonde friend with distain. I digest that truth bomb.

Alas, that’s really not it. It was always him. It was always going to be him. It still is him. Whether we got married after one year or twenty years. It was going to happen. I mean when we met it was practically….. blue eyed boy meets a brown eyed girl.. oh oh ohhhhh the sweetest thing.… playing in the background.
How do I know this? How do I know I married the “right person”? Well, he looks at me across a room the way every girl wants to be looked at. Even when he hates me, he loves me. Can you really ask for anything else?

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Dating is easy. It’s all vacationing up the coast of Maine, pulling lobster pots, drinking beers out on a beach. If you can do anything for your relationship. I highly recommend living in a one bed room apartment that is way below your budget. You have so much more money to do fun crap. Ride bicycles to beach bars and stop on the way home to sit in the sand and look at the stars. Why are you in a rush to buy a house? Do you know how fun it is to go on vacation? I’m not saying live like this forever, but at least for a little bit.

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Eventually though your life evolves and moves forward and that is pretty damn awesome too! You make a home with that guy and it is the first place that has felt like home in a very, very long time. You will never be able to put into words how grateful you are for him. That he gave you a home, when you had been little girl lost for oh so long.
Now when you procreate you get to know your partner on a whole new level. True colors show when there really isn’t enough time for every one all the time. It is impossible to know your spouse like this before you have children, because you just can’t conjure up the situations you find your self in as a parent. Why? Oh because, their childhood starts to show up and clash with yours. You came from different places, but now you are trying to unite and create a new family, together. There will surely be bumps in the road! Get a helmet!
No, I guess while we were vacationing in St. Marteen I forgot to ask, “Do you have some deep seeded ideas that because you make a lot more money than I do, that your help with household work should be optional? Help when you can. If you miss a week. So be it. Oh and when you do consistently help for a week, is it required that I strap on my tuba and give a parade in your honor?

Whoops. Did I say that out loud?

Now don’t misunderstand, my husband is a great guy. I don’t think you could really find any one to tell you otherwise. He is a loyal friend. Hard worker. Generous. Hilarious, but you only get to see that side of him if he lets you in. I came into his life like the tasmanian devil and broke down all his walls. So he is regularly hilarious to me. But he does not crave attention, nor does he mind if other people have the spotlight. He knows more about the outdoors then you could ever dream of. He can build anything, literally anything. He never forgets to mow the lawn. He is handsome as shit.

I know what you are thinking! That guy sounds is great!! Why you hating on him Britt? Well, I’ll tell you why!

Because it’s not him. It’s figuring out “us.” Learning how to function as a family is hard. How to distinguish roles. How to figure out how we work. Who does what. How to communicate to keep this ship a float. There are bound to be mess ups and changes and shenanigans.

Does it make sense that he thinks women should feed every one all the time? That’s just part of the female job description to him. Of course it does, he has had Italian women cooking him up delicious food and handing it to him at his request his whole life. Why would he think otherwise? I mean that sounds glorious to me.

I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately. How the only picture I have of a family is my family growing up. The only picture the husband has is his family growing up. I think our families share a lot of the same interests and values. Yet, no matter what two families are joining, they are bound to be quite different.

I’ll explain.

Lets put me and my sugar daddy down on paper.

HUSBAND background check:

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6 Years Older than me

Parents together since high school

Oldest sibling

Stay at home Mom. 2 boys 2 years apart. Does every thing for every one all the time. Especially feeding every one.

Dad worked his ass off for his family. At different points it would be 6 days a week plus sanding at night in the Winter.

Same house entire childhood.

We live in his hometown. Ten minutes for his entire immediate family.

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WIFE background check:

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Parents together since high school until divorce when I was 18. Would rather eat a turd then speak to one another.

Middle Child

Mom worked nights 11PM-7AM at the hospital. 4 kids in 5 years. Had a 3 and 4 year old girls and wanted to have one more baby and got twins. Boy and Girl. Named the twins Mark and Luke. Luke as a girls name? How edgy for 1990.

Dad put all 4 of us to bed at night by himself. Coached almost every sports team I played on. Worked for himself his whole life so that he never missed a game.

Same household for entire adolescents. Then I went away to college my freshman year and when I was away that Fall they were like, Yaaa… we are getting divorced and selling the house. Sorry. Oh please don’t misconstrue, some people are meant to get divorced. My sister and I were pretty sure one of them was going to kill the other. But alas, the timing was poor.

Live 2+ hours from all my family. Love where I live. But miss them always.

 

 

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So we are a paradox. We are both the same and yet completely different.

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We are not defined by our upbringing but we are definitely the product of it. It’s the only picture we have of how a family is supposed to run. Whether we realize it or not.

Now we are a NEW team. We are neither of our childhood families. We have to figure out how to create a unit of our very own. Save happy traditions. Work on how we communicate and make life happen.  It’s pretty awesome, but definitely a work in progress. Always.

Hard? Sure.

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Worth it? Oh yes.

BURBANK FAMILY SEPT2015-4573

 

 

I saw that you were perfect and so I loved you.

Then I saw that you were not perfect and I loved you even more.

-unknown

Pregnant Lady 101: How to Speak to a Pregnant Woman

 

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People are generally very kind to pregnant women.
Now even though that is a  true statement there are certain groups of people that mean well, but they just don’t understand. These people may be male, never have been pregnant, or have been pregnant so long ago that they forget, or they could just be rude assholes. Therefore, they may not be able to understand what a pregnant woman is going through. Makes sense, but this creates a lack of understanding of why their question may be annoying to a pregnant woman. Children are excluded from this list because they are still learning social skills.

So to help all these groups of individuals out

I have put together a list of

things NOT to say to a pregnant woman!

“CONGRATULATIONS!! WHEN ARE YOU DUE? or  Are you pregnant?”
   Unless someone tells you they are pregnant. Or you know ahead of time that they are DEFINITELY pregnant. AKA social media announcements, their sister told you already, or they are wearing a shirt that says BUN IN THE OVEN ect.
   Because yes, you may think you are being kind to a newly pregnant woman, but in all actuality you may be devestating a woman who had a baby 4 months ago.
  The entire 16 months post having baby #2, I have consistently been congratulated on being pregnant. Believe me, the conversation following me telling you that I am not currently pregnant is awkward as the day is long. My body is indeed quite a funny shape at this moment, i’ll give you that. Jacked muscular Mom arms, toned legs, yet a mid section that is squishy and whispers to me while getting dressed…”Let’s wear pants made of spandex material today..” If you know what I mean..
 I also had been pregnant for 2 years straight. So it’s fair that some people just got used to me alway being knocked up. Alas, when i’m eating ice cream alone in my bath tub later crying, that’s on you.
Moral of the story: Just keep your mouth shut until you actually know the person is pregnant. Leave people alone in the super market. Maybe try “Hey how are you doing today?” Much safer. Unless you enjoy deep awkwardness, well then, continue on I guess.
Wow! Are you sure you aren’t having twins?
No pregnant woman likes this. No one thinks it’s funny.
I love jokes, dirty jokes, bad puns, stand up comedy, you name it. Yet, I found no fun in people pointing out how large and in charge I was. I’ll give you an example from my brain.
I’m not proud of what my hormonal brain conjured up when people said this to me, but pregnant ladies be cray! It would go something like this..
 Casual acquaintances behind me in CVS line says,
“Wow! Are you sure you don’t have twins in there?”

What I wanted to say:

“Hey man, i’m trying to buy some stool softner at CVS pharmacy. I just barfed in the parking lot, into a grocery bag, while my other baby cried in the back seat. Then the plastic bag leaked and got on my shoe. I came in this store with puke shoe because I haven’t pooped in days and i’m in the process of rectifying this situation. So if you don’t mind, I really don’t need to be reminded how large I am. I know how large I am. I have to get a leg swinging start to get out of bed in the morning. Nobody needs to point this out to me. But ya, there is a 10 lb baby doing parkour on my bladder. I’ve gained 65 lbs. The kid I had a year ago was 10 lbs and NO I did not have a c section. I could possibly have PTSD from that crime scene. So you reminding me that I am about to have ANOTHER enormous man climb out of my downstairs is just unnecessary. Now buy my stool softener for me and this bag of Reese’s as punishment for hurting my feelings.”

What I did say:

“No just one.” Smile-nod. Bee line for the exit. Ben and I can’t be slowed down when we are on the path home to nap time.
“Any day now huh?”
Do not mentioned to a pregnant woman that she may be due any day now. Because she may not be due any day soon. Every woman’s pregnant body is very different. That’s just a fact. Short women with petite frames can look like they are farther along because that baby has less room in that little body. Thank goodness i’m a tall drink of water, I was like a 5 star baby hotel. No wonder Ben decided to stay in until 41 & 1/2 weeks.
If it was February and someone said to me, “Due any day now huh?” I’d say, “Yes any day in August.” I had this conversation often from February until August 21st.
“Did you guys plan on getting pregnant or was it a little oops?”
Planned, Unplanned, IVF, Drunken one night stand, Poor birth control planning..ect.
None of it is any of your business! If someone wants to share this with you, that’s great! But that should be theirs to share, not yours to ask.  Family planning can be a very emotional and trying time. You never know what is going on with any one else! Be kind. Then when they decide to share information, support the crap out of them!
It was interesting to hear many comments by people who didn’t mean any harm, but assumed my second son was a oops baby. Considering my first son was only 3 months old when the second was conceived.
But it’s 2016, I’m an adult,I know how birth control and reproduction works. Therefore, if I wasn’t taking the very easy steps to prevent this from occurring, then I suppose that was my decision.
In our case we rolled the dice and won though.
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Long story short….
THINK BEFORE YOU SPEAK!
 Growing a human being is no joke. SO pregnant ladies don’t need your nonsense on top of that.
JUST REMEMBER that in the BLINK OF AN EYE This girl:
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 Became this girl:
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And her ankles look like this-
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So beware.

PREGNANCY YOGA, do it.

STRETCHING FEELS SO GOOD WHEN YOU ARE PREGNANT! I always felt 100% better at the yoga studio than sitting on my couch. I can’t speak for every yoga studio, but mine has a very good energy. People are positive and happy and chatty. Every one all jacked up on endorphins and encouraging each other. There is a woman at the studio who founded A Calmer Choice. Who’s mission statement is as follows: Calmer Choice is a universal prevention program committed to teaching young people how to effectively and safely manage stress and resolve conflict so that they live happy, healthy and successful lives. Our goal is to provide skills that will diminish the risk of violence, substance abuse, and other self-destructive behaviors.

Umm.. That’s amazing! I’m genuinely annoyed that I have to go to the grocery store later today. How lazy am I? She’s out making the world a better place. Inspiring stuff for sure.

So being around that level of awesome human being is always beneficial. Therefore, the yoga studio became my happy place during my first pregnancy. A place to chat. A place to be silent.A place to slow down. To stop the glorification of busy.

Stretching feels so good when you are pregnant! Your body actually becomes more flexible while preparing for child birth. That’s a scientific fact! Obviously, talk to your doctor when starting any new work out plan. While stretching, if it hurts then stop. Be kind to yourself.

Now thanks to a very smart yoga teacher. I have a bunch of pictures taken when I was roughly 37 weeks pregnant with Ben. Taken by the talented Frank Pulsifer!

Damn, I just got myself fired up! Now I need to get my ass to Bikram Yoga Cape Cod.

 

Ideally, you would go to a yoga studio and work out with a certified teacher. But if you’ve got other kids napping upstairs and that’s not a possibility, here are some pregnancy stretches that will make you say… OHHHHH YAHHHH…….

 

 

 

Triangle, I hate you. Which means I need you the most. 

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Namaste

971635_755094353337_1467232763_nLook at that big old 10 lb baby.
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Breathe. Breathe. Breathe.

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Pregnancy savasana you are my best friend.

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Hurts so good.

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Have you bent backwards today? Always forward bending. Picking up kids. Picking up legos. Forward forward forward. Make sure you bend backwards every day.

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Love.

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I got two metal rods on my spine and a 10 lb on my abdomen. What’s your excuse?

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Learning Disabilities

I am a chatter box. I have a lot of conversations, in my travels through my daily day. I have, at times, heard a lot of misinformation about learning disabilities. So I’m going to give every one some super BASIC info on learning disabilities. Knowledge is power man. That way you don’t look like a ding dong when you are stating something at a wine and cheese party.

AUTISM

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Autism Speaks defines Autism as:

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and autism are both general terms for a group of complex disorders of brain development. These disorders are characterized, in varying degrees, by difficulties in social interaction, verbal and nonverbal communication and repetitive behaviors. With the May 2013 publication of the DSM-5 diagnostic manual, all autism disorders were merged into one umbrella diagnosis of ASD. Previously, they were recognized as distinct subtypes, including autistic disorder, childhood disintegrative disorder, pervasive developmental disorder-not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS) and Asperger syndrome.

I was at a store the other day and they were asking for dollar donations to find a “cure” for Autism. Hm… So what you should know is that Autism is not a disease, it was a way the brain develops. No one needs to be cured. I’m sure this store has all the best intentions in the world and I applaud their efforts. Yes, they need to be extra supported, listened to, and accommodated at times.  But Autistic kids don’t need to be cured.

Whatever you think you know about what a person on the spectrum can or can’t do, is probably incorrect. That is why “spectrum” is the perfect descriptive word.

I know this from experience, because personally someone on the spectrum has..

Drained jump shots in my face

Beat me in Chess

Taught me to make french toast

Made me cry from watching them sing on stage.

Taught me how to whip and nae nae

Encouraged me to keep running while we are out jogging

Thrown water balloons at me from an upstairs window

Beat me in Wii dance

Reminded me of my exact promise I stated two weeks ago

Worried about my kids when they are sick

Brought me flowers when I came back from maternity leave

Laughed at me when I fell over a bench playing ultimate frisbee

Taught me a level of patience, humility, and compassion that I did not have prior to knowing this community.

If you have seen one Autistic kid, you have seen one Autistic kid.

Every one is different and that’s okay.

ADHD

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder affects children and teens and can continue into adulthood. ADHD is the most commonly diagnosed mental disorder of children. Kids with ADHD may be hyperactive and unable control their impulses. Or they may have trouble paying attention. These behaviors interfere with school and home life.

It’s more common in boys than in girls. It’s usually discovered during the early school years, when a child begins to have problems paying attention.

Adults with ADHD may have trouble managing time, being organized, setting goals, and holding down a job. They may also have problems with relationships self-esteem, and addiction.

Tufts Health insurance does not cover testing for ADHD. As they do not see it is “medically necessary.” Now I don’t know if they just don’t want anything to do with it because people are always trying to get controlled meds and abuse them. Sell them. Which sucks. But man I need to bring Tufts health reps to work with me one day and be like “okay if by the end of the day you can tell me ADHD testing is not medically necessary.” Good luck with that.

Is it over diagnosed? Probably. But I don’t have the criteria for my opinion to matter on that one.

All drugs aside, if you feel like your brain or your child’s brain is ADHD here are my little TIPS you really should be focusing on:

EXERCISE EXERCISE EXERCISE:

Best case scenario you get your ADHD kid into sports. Let them try everything. Soccer, Basketball, Running, Golf, Gymnastics, Dance, Cheerleading. Whatever they are interested in. Get involved. Get them excited. BURN OFF THEIR ENERGY. Get them hyper focused on working out. It will help improve mood and help them go to sleep at night.

SLEEP!!

Turning your brain off at the end of the day may be very hard. Make a night time routine. Force yourself to go to bed. Consistent sleep patterns will save your kids life. Have them hand in the electronics to you at 9 PM. Then make them go to their room. They don’t even have to go to sleep, but they have to follow a routine that signals their brain that it’s time to calm down.

Don’t FALL asleep watching TV!

If your kid is telling you he needs the TV to fall asleep. Say no. Instead have him listen to music with head phones while laying in bed. TV is too stimulating. He will stay up too late continuing to watch, only falling asleep when he is completely exhausted.

Instead, listen to pandora stations. It makes your mind stop running with your own thoughts. But your eyes are closed and it’s dark. Works like a charm.

They even have podcasts now that some guy tells very boring stories. You listen to it, and it works so well, I tried it!

Schedules 

Consistency will save your life. Daily schedules decrease anxiety of what is going to happen. Sets your kid up for success.

“That does suck honey, but still NO.”

Show your kid some support and understanding as he is facing challenges. Don’t dismiss it. But, still make them do it themselves. Figure it out for themselves. Don’t let them use their learning disability as a crutch. Don’t do things for them.

Basically, don’t let them off the hook. “Well, you know, Michael has ADHD so he can’t control himself.” Wrong.

“It is MUCH harder for Michael to control himself. It has been so challenging for us to work on ways for him to calm down.”

I only say this because on a daily basis for five years I have seen students with learning disabilities be given tasks that their parents swore they “couldn’t do” and I watched them rise to the occasion.

Sometimes we handicap the people we love most.  It is most definitely a delicate balance.

Wow, that got deep fast.

 

Always ask for help!

Reach out to people. Seek counseling. Read books. Utilize services. Enlist the help of an advocate if you are feeling overwhelmed. No one is ever alone.

 

 

But who am I to tell you what to do? Just some friendly suggestions and information.

 

 

Special Olympics

The mission of Special Olympics is to provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes and the community.

Special Olympics Donations

The EVE of 2016

The coming of a new year always creates excitement, reflection, and appreciation for others. I went on a mini journey tonight to figure out what every one is looking for in the new year on our horizon. Every one’s life moves forward whether they would like it to or not. I believe starting out the year in a motivated mind set is always a win.

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So tonight I asked every one…

WHAT IS YOUR NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTION?!

I mean REVOLUTION..

“Be the happiest person who has ever existed and spread that love.” Haley, 24

“To slow down and enjoy the good things with my children before they get too big!” Elizabeth, 28

“Running two marathons in 2016.” Erica, 29

“Hang out with Britt more.” Hannah, 26

“Quit Smoking.” LT, 25

“Worry less, nurture the women in my life, love myself” Nikki, 26

“Work towards buying a house.” Chels, 26

“Grow my hair and beard at least until March break and drink more water.” James, 29

“Focus on becoming a happier and healthier me.” Brooke, 147

“To take care of myself.” Tam B, 30

“To be part of the solution” Jim, 36

“To meet Gronk at the game tomorrow and have him sign my boob.” Patricia, 34

“Starting to write again and not being afraid to say NO!” Kara, 40

“Sit cross legged” Robbie Roadsteamer, 31

“No junk food and to exercise 3x a week” Cassie, 75

“Be on fleek” Jenna, 27

“No drinking for January. Doing my job to its maximum potential.” Jac, 29

“Just to be a better person than I was the day before.” Jamie, 35

“Eat/drink more carbs!” Matt, 50

“Meditate daily” Wendy, 45

“Don’t kill my interns.” Anonymous Pediatric Resident, 28

“To stop being hard on myself.” Jess, 26

“File a patent.” Jon, 29

“Continue to fight for my health and don’t take no for an answer.” Elizabeth Leto, 26

“Make a best friend, not be fat.” Hunter, 27

“Happiness” Cassie, 31

“Haven’t really thought about it.” Adam, 32

“See more phish.” Mike, 28

“I have none. I am a perfect circle.” Ryan Howard, 32

“I’m Ben.” Jack, 1

“I’ll do this puzzle.” Ben, 2

“I’m going to be a good example for my Sons.” The Dad, 35

Lastly,

We got a selfie stick for Christmas. People are just encouraging us to be more obnoxious in 2016. Just apologizing in advance for that.

Here was our New Year’s Ever facial expression lesson.

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“Take care of myself, so that I can take great care of them” Somebody’s Mother, 29

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Dueces 2015