Monday, January 23, 2017

The Mommy-cation

I finally flew the coop this weekend. One of my very best friends is getting married in a few weeks and as a bridesmaid, I was ecstatic to participate in the bachelorette party weekend in Traverse City. We stayed in an adorable, fully stocked house and our only plans were wine tasting, wine tasting, dancing, and more wine tasting. Seriously. The type of weekend dreams are made of.

In between sips of wine and hilarious conversation, I was asked a few times if it was hard to for me to pack my stuff and leave my kids for a weekend.

Short answer? Nopeity.Nope.Nope.Nope.

Long answer? I had not yet left the little guy anywhere over night. Not because I hadn't wanted too {someone take him....pleaseeee} but because hes a total Momma's boy who was attached to me, literally and figuratively, nursing until he was almost a year old and standing at the door and crying when I leave to go get groceries {wine}.  He is now 16 months old so including his incubation period in my uterus, I had not been alone in over 2 years. 2 years since I had been alone longer than a few hours spent at the grocery store or out to dinner with girlfriends. 
Two. Freaking. Years.

And let me tell you Mommas, it was an amazing, unforgettable weekend that I didn't even realize how badly I needed. I drank hot coffee. I laughed so hard I cried. I spent time with girls who knew me before I became a Mom and met some amazing ladies who got to know me as more than just a Mom. I got to get ready without mentally planning out what outfit to put each kid in while trying not to give someone a third-degree burn as they all pile into my tiny ass bathroom to watch me straighten my hair {seriously whyyyy?!} I got dressed up to go to a dinner that didn't involve cutting up chicken tenders and asking for more ranch dressing and playing tic-tac-toe and worrying if our food would arrive before someone had a breakdown. I danced to music that wasn't Taylor Swift and surprised myself by remembering all the lyrics to accurately white girl rap Nelly's 'EI' to the bachelorette {buy me enough wine and for $5, I'll do it for you too.} I sat and had actual conversation with adults without being interrupted a million times or having to put my phone on mute to threaten someone with a timeout if they don't knockthatshitoffrightnow. I got to breathe. I got to sit in silence. I got to think. And when the fun was over and it was time to pack up and go, I could not wait to get home to my kids and my amazing husband {whose the real MVP for taking care of our kids all weekend so I could go} because I actually got a chance to miss them.

(Less whine. More wine.) 

Listen Mommas. There is no award for being the Most Tired, the Most Stressed, the Most Busy, or the Most Likely To Lose Her Shit {if there was I would've gotten that one by now.} Take the vacation. Go on the Girls Weekend. Plan the weekend or evening getaway with your husband or partner. If the opportunity arises for you to get out for a day or a night or an hour, run, don't walk your amazing ass out the door. Screw the Mommy guilt that tries to bubble up in your brain as you pull out of the driveway; your kids will be fine, you will all survive, and everyone will be better for it.

And just know that if your kids are anything like mine, they will run to greet you when you get home, smother you in hugs and kisses, word vomit all the things they did while you were away in under 3 minutes, and be back to whining, arguing and driving you nuts within an hour, giving you all the more reason to start planning and fantasizing about your next great escape.

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Thursday, January 19, 2017

WTF do you do all day?

I know a lot of people have thought it and {hopefully} yo momma raised you right so you've never said it aloud but since I'm feeling generous, I'm going to give you an inside peek into WTF it is Stay at Home Moms do all day. Or at least this SAHM...I wont speak for all of them because the last thing you should ever do is assume anything about sleep deprived, coffee fueled women who deal with toddlers all day {trust me on this one}.

I've been running this {shit}show for the last 6 years and I've gotten my fair share of curious/judgmental/nosy questions along the way so let's just clear up a few of my personal favorites real quick--

'Don't you get bored?!' Ummm duh. 

'What are you going to do when the kids are all in school?!' I'm not 100% sure what direction my life will be in next Thursday let alone in five years from now. 

'3 kids under 6?! You must have your hands full.' Yes I do but I always make sure one hand is empty by 7pm so I can put a beer in it {priorities}.

'I could never stay home all day like that. I'd go crazy.' Ya know what would make me crazy? Working a 40hr a week job and still only being able to afford the $8 bottle of wine at Rite Aid after I pay for daycare for 3 kids, that's what.
(Me. Hiding from my kids and your unwanted judgement.)

So here's the breakdown for all you nosy ass people out there who are still reading this {Kidding. Please keep reading. The next part took forever to write. Love you.} 

6:45am: Open eyes. Brush. Wash.
7am: Wake up kids. Pray middle child doesn't take a swing at me.
7:15-8:30am: 1st cup of coffee. Feed kids. Make lunch for kindergartner. Hunt for quarters to send with kindergartner for whatever fundraiser is going on this week. Pick out outfits. Listen to middle child cry that she cant wear a dress. Get everyone washed and brushed and out the door.
8:35am: Drop off kindergartner
9:00am: Drop off preschooler
9:15-10am: Laundry. Clean up kitchen after breakfast. Whisper chat with BFF while Nolan naps. Drink 2nd cup of coffee.
10am: Play with the lil guy. Attempt to fold laundry while lil guy throws clean clothes around the room. Reheat coffee. Get smacked in face with PopTart box.
10:05am: Tell Nolan no Poptarts.
10:06am: Give in and give screaming kid Pop Tart.
10:07am: Watch kid take one bite of PopTart and give the rest to the dog. Die a little inside.
10:15-11:15am: Pay bills/play/read/clean.
11:30am: Pick up preschooler.
11:45am: Lunch time. Reheat coffee. Naptime. Send preschooler upstairs to do whatever she does besides nap. Reheat coffee.
Noon: Clean up kitchen from lunch. Tiptoe around living room picking up toys while Nolan naps.
12:30pm: Shovel food in my face and try not to breathe too hard as I enjoy the silence. Give up on reheated garbage coffee.
1pm: Finish laundry/scrub something I just scrubbed two days ago.
1:15pm: Nolan wakes up. Read books. Play. Get hit in head with NutriGrain bars.
2pm: Preschooler descends from upstairs.
2:15pm: Chill time. Cartoons. More snacks. Recheck dinner recipe to figure out what essential ingredient I forgot to buy.
3pm: Pick up house before kindergartner gets home.
3:30pm: Leave to get kindergartner.
3:35pm: Stand in pick up line and try not to be awkward when adults talk to me.
4pm: Home with kindergartner.
4:10pm: Some type of annoying craft activity that takes 25min to set up and is over in 10min.
5pm: Start making dinner. Kids disappear to the basement because they know better.
6:15pm: Dinner.
6:45pm: Faceplant into couch. Get immediately swarmed by all three kids who don't give good backrubs. Debate leaving kitchen dirty until morning.
7pm: Clean up kitchen for the 42nd time. Family time. W{h}ine time. Binge watch 'Shameless' when kids disappear with Ipads.
9pm: Head upstairs. Brush. Wash. Tuck kids in. Squeeze their faces because they are so adorable and Ilovethemsomuchithurts.
9:10pm: Tell kids to lay down its bedtime. 
9:20pm: Yell at kids to go to bed because if I come in there they will be sorry. 
9:30pm: Debate going downstairs for 'me' time. Never do. 
9:33pm: Pass out. 

So there ya have it. And listen, Working Moms, Single Moms, Moms whose Husbands travel a lot etc you guys are my heroes...please don't take this as a 'My day is so much harder than yours' diatribe because at the end of the day, were all just Moms trying not to raise asshole children while staring at a clock waiting for our version of Whine Thirty. If you do more than me in a day, you are superhuman. If you do less and your kids are happy, tell me all your secrets. If you're silently judging me for giving my kids PopTarts, don't bother because the dog eats 85% of them anyways. If your surprised by what you read because you thought I had my shit together and my life was magical, I apologize for ever giving you that impression. And finally {and most importantly}, if you read that and felt exhausted and pity me, turn it into something tangible and send me free wine and cheese. 

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Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Snowday Blowday

I'm just gonna say it-- I hate snow days. I know, I know...I'm a stay at home Mom, I only have one extra kid home, I don't have to scramble at 5am to find childcare, I had 3 kids home everyday for over a year blahblahblah. Listen. I was that Mom dropping my kindergartner off on her first day struggling to see through my tears as I walked my sad ass out the door. I sent a text message to her teacher checking on her when I was still in the damn parking lot. I dreaded the first day of school all summer long because shes my baby and my helpful child who follows direction like a soldier and doesn't growl at me when I ask her to do something like my middle child does. But then something magical happened. She went to school. She made friends. She's learning shit. She's busy all day long. She loves it. And now I do too. Because she's doing all those things and I'm not the damn ringleader of it all struggling to plan out fun, educational activities that will expand their imaginations and land them full ride scholarships to Ivy League colleges.

Maybe its me. Maybe {most definitely} I've set my expectations too high and now that snow days are a reality, I'm expecting way too much. Maybe I need to suck it up and try to make the best out of em and enjoy these days of noise and chaos before they start sleeping in til noon and hiding in their rooms all day but this is my blog and I'll whine if I want too. Here's a breakdown of what Snow days {aka Blowdays} look like in the Jackman household--

Expectation: Receive phone call from school. Smile. Roll over and sleep in until 9am.
Reality: School calls at 5am. Groan. Toss and turn for the next two hours dreading the next 12hrs. Kids wake up at 7am just like every other day.
Expectation: Leisurely morning of not rushing and drinking hot coffee. Cartoons. Stay in pjs til noon. Read books. Relax. Play board games.
Reality: Kids eat breakfast and watch one show before jumping off the couch to go play with every single toy we own in under 35 minutes. Older two fight over the fact that preschooler doesn't really have a snow day because she doesn't go to school on Tuesdays. Someone cries. Everyone whines {me the loudest}.
Expectation: Snow covered yard ready to entertain kids for hours. Snowmen are built. Forts are made. Snowballs are thrown.
Reality: Zero snow. Backyard is flooded. Ice covered roads remove option of killing an hour on an exciting 'adventure' to Tim Hortons for hot coffee and TimBits.
Expectation: Hot chocolate. Homemade chicken noodle soup. Movies. Cuddling on couch.
Reality: More whining. Everyone's bored. No one eats lunch because they've eaten 17 snacks before noon. Preschooler is sick of kindergartner bossing her around. Kindergartner is upset preschooler doesn't 'play right'. Threaten to throw away all of something if they don't start sharing. Seriously consider braving ice covered roads to drive to Arby's and get a job application.
Expectation: Naps. Naps for everyone.
Reality: No naps. Ever. For anyone. Because apparently naps are more boring than walking around and complaining of boredom.
Expectation: Super awesome homemade dinner because I've got nothing but time.
Reality: Throw dinner together last minute because this day blows and I'm over it. Send husband a text to stop and get wine or don't bother coming home. Mean it. 
  {Dinners on snow days.}

Expectation: Fun filled day that leaves everyone exhausted and ready for bed at 8pm and sad they have to go back to school tomorrow.
Reality: Kids bouncing off walls because they built up lots of energy complaining and arguing for the last 12 hrs. Disappear to bathroom to shower and wash away the memory of the day before I lose my shit.  Furiously check tomorrows weather report and pray for blue skies and sunshine and our normal routine and world peace and no more snow days ever.

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Wednesday, January 11, 2017

The 2 types of Mommy friends we all need to survive

In my opinion, there are 2 types of Mommy friends we all need in order to navigate these extremely long, exhausting, lonely, repetitive, chaotic days of raising small humans who will hopefully not grow up to be complete and total assholes. Never, ever underestimate the power of a text from one of these women at 2pm on a Thursday when your trying not to lose your shit after spending 45 minutes searching your entire house for a pair of scissors your 6yr old swears she put back in its place and can absolutely not complete her homework packet without.

Mommy Friend #1- This is your person. She gets you. She's known you since you were in 6th grade stuffing your bra with Kleenex while wearing glasses that were too big for your face and trying to figure out how to straighten your hair on an ironing board {I'm speaking hypothetically; I skipped that awkward stage completely.} She's been there through boyfriends, and marriages, and babies. She will most likely {hopefully} outlive your husband and the two of you will spend your final days together guzzling wine, bitching about the weather, and terrorizing the stock boys at Kroger on your motorized carts {not that you've discussed it because thats just morbid and weird}. When you approach her with another one of your crazy ideas, she responds like this:

Mommy Friend #2: This is the friend you made sometime after high school when you were in that stage where you thought you had your shit together but really your shit was all over the place. She's that girl you never thought would hang out in your life as long as she did but now you cant imagine your life without her. She knew you when you were just getting to know yourself and she accepted the screwed up version you were wholeheartedly. She keeps you in check with that girl you used to be who had no boundaries, no obligations, no restrictions, no husband, no kids. She's sarcastic and hilarious and gives zero shits....and when you tell her your going to start a blog, she responds exactly the way you want her too because if it was anything less, it wouldnt be her:

Find your version of these women. Hang on to them. Bribe them with free wine when you're so far deep in the shithole that is Motherhood you cant see straight, let alone carry on meaningful conversation with anyone over the age of 5. Let them remind you of who you used to be and who you will be again someday. Celebrate with them when their kid potty trains {is there really any greater cause to celebrate?} and cry with them when life gets hard. Snapchat them pictures of your wine for now and hold on to the hope that someday soon you'll be bailing on a homework packets to sip wine with them in person. 

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

My teacher made me do it.

Helllllllooooo worlddddd!! This is meeeee (kidding, thats Adele). Okay, so welcome to my blog. 
As the title of this post suggests, this was not my idea {and honestly, not something I thought Id ever do} but it was this or fold the mountain of kids' laundry sitting in my dryer so obviously I chose this because folding kids' laundry is a special kind of hell that no one warns you about when your opening all those adorable clothes at your baby shower and everyones 'oooh-ing' and 'ahhh-ing' and feeling good about giving you teeny tiny baby socks that disappear over night only to turn up 8 months later when no one can wear them anymore. 
Anyways. Im starting this blog because I signed up for a freelance writing class almost 2 years ago {I procrastinated a bit because I had another baby. Get used to it.} and step Number One is to start a blog because in the freelance writing world, you do not exist without a blog. I repeat. You do not exist. The ultimate goal is to get my writing out there and eventually start doing freelance pieces for websites and utilize my super expensive English degree I will be paying off until Im 57 or I hit it big on scratch offs. 
So, here it is. My blog-- Whine Thirty. Because Im turning 30 this year and I plan to whine about it. And because I love wine {and beer, and vodka, and...welp, lets just say Im not picky} and because most days Im staring at a clock waiting for wine {you might call it dinner} time when my husband walks through the door and I can word vomit my entire day to him in under 4 minutes because hes the first adult Ive seen all day.
Join me. Check back often. Subscribe. Share. Leave me comments so I know my Mom isnt the only one reading {love you Mom}. 
Smooches 
Scary Mommy