My Kids Will Have To Figure Out How To Pretend Shoot Themselves Without Guns

I don’t remember having toy guns when I was little but I don’t remember them being forbidden either.  I like to think my brother and I were smart enough to realize we had no use for them.  More likely, my mom was a smart and sly parent who jedi mind tricked us into thinking we didn’t even want them.

At this point in my children’s lives I cannot imagine buying them a toy gun.  I am all for them exploring the topics of power or “good vs bad” but they are going to have to use their creativity to find suitable weapons.  A stick, their fingers, or a ruler will just have to do.  Especially when toy guns today look like this:


Seriously?  How can I explain to a child that somehow this is appropriate as a toy, but as a real object its only purpose is to inflict incredible harm on others?  It’s not that I think playing with guns will make your child a violent person, but I don’t feel comfortable buying a gun for my kids under the premise that “it’s just a toy.”  Even a toy gun needs a context, especially given the way violence is glorified by video games and movies.  I’m not saying my kids will never play with them ever because I don’t want to make a huge deal out of it.  However, there’s a huge spectrum between a toy water and that Nerf monstrosity.  A toy machine gun will never find its way into my house.

Do you allow toy guns in your house?  Would you?  What are your limitations on gun play?

I participated in a Huffington Post Live segment debating whether our children had the “right to bear toy arms.”  The discussion began with Halloween costumes but explored more, from Angelina Jolie to the media’s glorification of weapons.  (Spoiler alert:  I was the lone parent horrified by these objects.)

The ‘Pre-Baby Body’ Does Not Exist, Let’s Just Be Honest (And A Little Gross)

You know how real I like to be, right?  Well, I’m going there again my friends.  The post-baby body.  If you didn’t get enough from my boobs and period post, I am breaking down my own post-baby body from chest to hoo-ha on Mommyish.


Can we finally put the “pre-baby body” where it belongs? In the land of urban legend along with Big Foot, the Loch Ness Monster and fat-free potato chips. It doesn’t exist. I fit back into my pre-baby jeans a few weeks after giving birth, but three years later I am still wondering where the hell my own pre-baby body went.

Before pregnancy, my body was pretty much unchanged since puberty.  One year I carried around an extra 30 pounds of beer and pizza weight during my senior year of college, but that is a small blip on the life of this body.  If someone saved out my outdated 90s duds from high school I would surely be able to rock them.  I’d look hideous in my high-waist intentionally-marbled acid-wash jeans (à la the original 90210), but they’d fit.

The past three years my body has seen more change than in my entire life.  It swelled in pregnancy, I gave birth, I nursed.  Then I did it all over again, right away.  I’m not holding my physique to some impossible or industry-set standard. I’m holding it to the one I’m used to.  My “pre-baby body.”  And I am having a hard time coming to grips with what’s left.

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Oh No, I’m Not Telling A Toddler My Age!

So I might be over-thinking it a bit because I’ve got a lot of reasons to justify my position.  But the simple truth is, there is no way I am telling my 3-year-old son my age!

Read more of my personal story today at Mommyish:


Yesterday I had a rather traumatic experience.  My son asked me a question, I hesitated briefly, and then lied right to his sweet angel face.  The fib-worthy question he asked?

“How old are you, mommy?”

My first thought was “there is no way in hell I am going to tell you that.”  What use could a 3-year-old have for that information?  He’ll broadcast it in public, on the bus, in the grocery store, at school.   All of my mommy friends will confirm this and I remember doing it when I was young as well.

“My mommy is 23,” I would tell any stranger who would listen.  I’ve written about other words I don’t think my son can use with appropriate discretion at the age of three and now we can add another concept:  my age.

Back in the Mommyish offices I started to think about exactly why I didn’t want to share this information.  I am not ashamed of my age:  I have had amazing experiences, I am proud of my accomplishments, and I truly love the place I am in with my life right now.  Knowing that nothing in life is perfect, I would dare to say it’s pretty close.  So what is there to hide?

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Three things the second child gets to do first

People are always complaining on behalf of the second child.  The first child gets the most time, love and attention.  I’m guilty of it too.  I imagine there will come a time when my oldest won’t need me to do every single little thing for him, but it hasn’t happened yet.  Somehow his needs always trump those of his little sister.

Today, as I wheeled my kids home from the playground in the dark and the cold eating ice cream (I had a weak moment where I NEEDED an ice cream and since I don’t share, I had to buy one for each of them), I realized there are three things my daughter will do before my son.

1.  Go to the dentist.  I was so vigilant about my son’s sugar intake.  He didn’t even eat cake on his first birthday.  It wasn’t until his second birthday that my mother beat me down and gave him an ice cream sundae.  I was too pregnant to care.  My daughter?  She had Haagen Dazs before she was done nursing.  She eats gummi fruit snacks and cookies and she’s not even 20-months old.  It’s not a regular occurrence but the truth is I can no longer get away with serving these treats to my son without the second child getting the benefit.

2.  Get her vaccinations.  I had a perfectly mapped out, evenly spaced, appropriately delayed immunization schedule for my first-born.  I went in to my daughter’s two month check-up and asked, “can’t she just get them all right now?”  Second children get to enjoy all the germs the first child treks home from school.  I wanted her to be protected against every virus he carried on his grubby little hands.   My first-born had two years to build up his immunity to those silly viruses, my daughter was exposed from day one.  Ok, she didn’t get all her vaccinations at two months old, but I fear she needs more protection than my son who was allowed to slowly and naturally build his defenses.

3.  Go to therapy.  That is, if we decide to have that third baby and she becomes the middle child.

No, I’m not pregnant. But I did recently find C’s hospital hat which is smaller than the palm of my hand and gave me a tiny case of baby fever.

Bad mommy is a theme in my life, even after a fun and exciting day

This weekend our family made the best of what would turn out to be the one and only fall day this year by visiting a pumpkin patch.  Gavin jumped from bales of hay while our little C gathered mini-pumpkins in her basket like they were Manolos in Carrie Bradshaw’s closet.

I’ll take this one. And this one. And this one. Oh, and this one…

I devoured an apple cider donut in two bites before anyone could see me and demand that I share.  I barely had time to appreciate its absolute deliciousness, but I know it was out-of-this world.   Sadly, I was brought back to Earth by Gavin’s insistent mommy-mommy-mommy-mommy.  Since they are studying “The Farm” in nursery school, he wanted to bring something back for his class.  I said ok to a few gourds.  When I came back from wrangling Chloe away from the hot popcorn machine, Ian had said yes to 12 gourds, 5 Jack-B-Littles, 4 Indian corn cobs, 3 mini-cheese pumpkins, and a 2lb bag of golden delicious apples.

Proud of his finds

And that’s how a free family fun trip cost us $26 dollars for things that will surely rot in my cupboard, completely unnoticed until their stench takes over sometime in December and Gavin is devastated I never gave them to him to bring to school.  It all comes back to the bad mommy, doesn’t it?


What else I’ve been writing about lately:

On Mommyish:

Science sheds a whole new light on the idea of baby brain.  Son’s DNA was found in mother’s brain.

These schools may have been within their rights, but the way they handled these controversial shirts was unacceptable.  I Enjoy Vagina and Mitt Romney.

Do men struggle with work-life balance or do they just “do it all?”

Jennifer Lopez family show being called a sin by One Million Moms, but I just think it’s gonna suck.

On Skinny Mom:

Six helpful household cleaning tips for busy moms.

Yoga poses that promote healthy fertility (and why they work).

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