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Tag 'children'

Featured Download : Back to School Checklist

Today, Amanda officially turns 6 years old! And in only two weeks’ time, she starts 1st grade! Where did the summer go? And where did my baby go? She’ll have full days at school this year (that start far too early in the morning, if you ask me) and I’ll be putting my business goals into full gear. By the end of the 2010/11 school year, neither of us will be the same!

Back to School ChecklistBut, first things first… It’s time to gather up school supplies in preparation for that first day of the new school year (August 10th here in Georgetown). This fine checklist should do the trick… Enjoy!


Note : If you have a favorite checklist or chart or article that you’d like to see included, please let me know! I’d love to feature your favorites! [ FYI : Quality design is a must! ]

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Featured Download : Baby Travel Checklist

{ moms : add to the fun by reading this line using your classic accusatory tone! 😉 }

. . . and where do you think you’re going!?!

Baby Travel Checklist Well, wherever your travels may lead you this summer, you’ll definitely want to do some extra planning if you’ve got a new addition in tow! This is, by far, one of the best baby travel checklists that I have ever found in my online excursions. Enjoy!

Note : If you have a favorite checklist or chart or article that you’d like to see included, please let me know! I’d love to feature your favorites! [ FYI : Quality design is a must! ]

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Mommy Brag : Kindergarten Graduation !!

Can you believe it? Just yesterday (wasn’t it?), Amanda started Kindergarten… and now the school year is over! She officially graduated this morning!

Kindergarten Graduation - Amanda

Earlier this week, I was treated to a special preview… an ultra-exclusive solo performance of the ceremony’s graduation songs! (The photo below was captured during the so-called “sign language song” at graduation this morning. Such a sweetie!)

Kindergarten Graduation - Songs

I’m so happy that the photo of Amanda with her Kindergarten teacher, Ms. Hillman, turned out fairly well… it’ll soon find its home in Amanda’s “memory box.”

Amanda & Ms. Hillman

…and to think we just got our school routine figured out! Oh, well… at least we’re ready for first grade, right? 😉

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Featured Download : Camp Packing List

Wow! As it turned out, there was such a fantastic response for the first featured download of the new [ real neat ] series—family chore chart—I decided to leave it be for two weeks instead of just one! Anyway, I’m excited to share another one of my favorites with you!

Camp Packing List Now that summer is upon us and the school year is ending, it’s time for parents to ship their kids off to the wilderness! 😉


This kid-friendly camp packing list will help all them young’uns ready themselves for a typical two-week adventure!

Note : If you have a favorite checklist or chart or article that you’d like to see included, please let me know! I’d love to feature your favorites! [ FYI : Quality design is a must! ]

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Don’t Be a Martyr, Mom !!

Photo Source: Hans Vandenberg
This past weekend, I found myself watching a marathon of House reruns and was truly inspired by something that Wilson said to Cuddy in Season 5, Episode 12 (Painless). Allow me to set the scene for you…


* * * WARNING: LONG POST * * *
[ but well worth the read! ]

The hospital administrator, Cuddy, is an unmarried middle-aged career woman who has been longing to have a baby. Without a man in the picture, she has decided to adopt. By Episode 6 (Joy), arrangements have been made, expenses have been covered, stage set for a picture perfect adoption… and then the young troubled birth mother chooses to keep her baby, leaving Cuddy completely and utterly heartbroken.

Fast forward to Episode 11 (Joy to the World). After cataloging her symptoms and conducting several tests, House diagnoses a young overweight teenage girl with leukemia. Back in his office, while House shares the story of his “virgin” clinic patient, Cuddy realizes that the young girl’s symptoms are more likely the result of eclampsia, a complication of pregnancy.

The scared, guilt-ridden teenager had kept her pregnancy a secret under baggy clothes, unexpectedly given birth to a premature baby, and then abandoned the infant near a local soup kitchen. Cuddy went out to look for the body, only to find that the baby had actually survived thanks to the homeless couple who found her.

Both the teenagers and their parents decided that it was simply too painful to keep the baby, so they opted to put her up for adoption. Cuddy touched base with her lawyer, got approved to be a foster parent (who could later adopt), and took the baby home.

Finally, we get to Episode 12 (and, yes, I really do have a point to all this… ;)). Cuddy has been struggling to balance her sanity, her career, and her new baby. While she attempts to tidy up the house (and console the baby), the doorbell rings. Her caseworker has arrived early to do the mandatory foster home inspection! Cuddy is horrified!

The caseworker quickly looks around and glances into the other rooms, making notations on his clipboard. All the while, Cuddy rambles on and on, apologizing for her messy home, her busy work schedule, and her incompetence as a new mom.

The caseworker finally manages to interrupt her and says, “Dr. Cuddy, you’ve got sufficient income, a high degree of personal and professional stability, and you care enough to be embarrassed by what a mess this place is… Believe me, that puts you head and shoulders above most of the foster moms I visit.” (scary thought, isn’t it?)

As the episode ends, Wilson stops by to visit Cuddy and the new baby. Cuddy tells Wilson that she passed the home inspection but is disappointed that she failed by her own standards. Then, (this is the important part!) Wilson asks why women as a whole are always creating these ridiculous standards that no human being could possibly ever meet.

He goes on to say that any man, in the same situation, would have at least two assistants at work, a maid, a cook, a nanny, and a wife at home. Wilson tells Cuddy that she needs to be more like a man and get some help.

“Give yourself a break. You’re not Superwoman. Don’t be a martyr!”

Wow. So poignant.

Really, why is it that, as moms, we are so terribly critical of ourselves? If you’re a stay-at-home mom, you feel guilty that you should be working and contributing more to the family financially. If you’re a work-outside-the-home mom, you feel guilty that you should be at home raising your little ones. Each of us envies the other.

“I stress out over my messy house. I hate it when friends and family are ‘in the neighborhood’ and just ‘drop by’ unannounced. I never have time enough to keep the house clean. I don’t spend enough quality time with my kids. I feel like I’m letting my husband down. I wouldn’t know what to do if I had a full day all to myself. I don’t even know what I like anymore.”

“Why can’t I get the laundry folded and put away before I have to wash everything again? Why can’t I keep my cool at the library like those other moms? Why can’t my kids be mindful and well-behaved like the ones we saw at the grocery store this morning? Why can’t I just be happy with my life? There must be something wrong with me!”

OK. You get the point, I’m sure. Now, let’s look at things from another perspective. Your very best friend in the world has confided in you all her deepest insecurities. You’re going to tell her there’s something wrong with her, right? . . . Didn’t think so. Why is it, then, that we think it’s OK to say these things to ourselves? It’s NOT!

Remember, we only get to see a tiny snippet of another mom’s life. We never get to see the whole picture. Every woman feels inadequate in her mothering in one way or another, at one time or another. So, please, don’t be a martyr… recognize your own limitations and get help when and where you need it. I dare you!

And, please go easy on the other moms who cross your path each day. They’re dealing with their own insecurities. They don’t need your judgment… they need your help! So, next time you see a struggling mom, offer her a hand. I double dare you!

What are your thoughts? How have you grown to accept your shortcomings as a mom? How has your perspective changed since The Before Kids Time?

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