Have you ever been surprised by another mom’s parenting style? Check out Pretty Wicked Moms!

If you are a mom, I’m sure at some point another mom’s parenting style has surprised you.  For good or for bad.  Maybe both. When POPSUGAR asked me if I wanted to check out a new show coming soon to Lifetime called Pretty Wicked Moms, I wanted to see it.  I am NOT the biggest reality TV fan out there, but sometimes it’s just plain fun to watch these shows.  The world of being a mom can be one of the most wonderful and supportive communities there is- but at the same time (often simultaneously) it can also be one of the most cutthroat, competitive and judgemental communities out there.

when i was still the worlds best mother

Before I was a mom, I was the best.parent.ever. I was going to do it all RIGHT.  After you stop laughing at my ridiculousness, keep reading.  I think the mom’s parenting style that has surprised me MOST has been my own. I am fairly sure most people thought I’d put my kids on a schedule quite early….I’m not sure we’ve ever had a real schedule in this house. There’s a lot of grey in our schedule. Not much black and white. I really wasgoing to be the best mom ever. I researched my butt off. I was on the pre-parental pregnancy HIGH HORSE, y’all, and I wasn’t coming down off of that.  I was just going to move it to a pedestal.

And then the baby came.  Aw, hi cute baby!!  CRASH.  Off that high pedestal, right now, new mama!!  You weren’t going to cosleep?  Babies should only nurse for 6 weeks? 6 months?  You’ll never cloth diaper?  Won’t wear your baby?Think again, my friend.

i was never going to wear my baby

Babywearing quickly became a way of life for me as a mom. But it was on my “I never” list!

Like so many mamas I’d met, talked to, read about, heard about, or just saw, when the baby came, I had to do a lot based on my instinct.  Maybe it wasn’t with kid 1, or even kid 2.  But by kid 3?  Many, many of those “I never” statements I’d been so darn sure about were “I’ve done it” or “It got the baby to sleep/eat.”  All that stuff in “the books” didn’t apply to my baby.  Trial and error got us into a groove, although it seemed like the groove would last for 3 days and things would change again.  Back to square one.

I have see other’s reactions when they learn how close together our children are, or that my littlest one slept in our bed for the better part of a year.  I’ve seen eyebrows go up when they hear that not one but TWO of my kids were nursed far past a year, one for over 2 years.  I’ve also seen “that look” when they learn my kids have all had formula.  Or that I took multiple herbal remedies to increase my breast milk production for months on end.  I’ve long since stopped caring (although not to the extent some of the moms on Pretty Wicked Moms don’t care!!) about what others think.  My family, my business. Period. Your family, your business.

I am not proud of this but I can clearly remember thinking (and probably judging because I was so ignorant) about WHY anyone would want to breastfeed a baby after a year…a toddler…a preschooler…and yet, here I am, telling you I nursed my younger 2 far past a year, the last one, well past 2 years.  Me.  The one who couldn’t understand why anyone would want to.  But at the time, it worked. It worked for my kids and it worked for me.  It hurt no one and it worked.  Now, if I hear someone has an extended nursing relationship, I quietly think to myself “I hope their kid isn’t a biter.”

I’ve learned from my almost 8 years as an actual parent (and unlearned all the perfection I wasn’t ever going to attain in my months of pregnancy with child #1) that we are all pretty much doing the very best we can.  Period.  If it works and isn’t hurting anyone, who cares?  Not my business, not yours either.  Of course, that doesn’t mean that I can’t enjoy a show that gets as snarky and high -horsey (or should I say, high-end-horsey) like Pretty Wicked Moms.  That’s just fun to watch.  (And really, if I’m being totally honest, I sit and wonder why in the world someone would want to wear heels that high while caring for their children…..)

pretty wicked moms

Photo from Lifetime

If you want some fun viewing, be sure to check out Pretty Wicked Moms.  This group of moms is not like any mom I’ve met in real life, but the parenting styles and differences are the same basic ones that I’ve heard from all moms.  Cosleeping, caregiving, birthday parties and more.  The parenting styles and differences aren’t so different, but these ladies seem a lot more concerned with how they look WHILE they are parenting than what others think!  It’s snarky and outrageous at times but it’s also entertaining and fun to watch. Tune in to watch parenting like you’ve never seen before with the first episode of Pretty Wicked Moms on Tuesday, June 4, at 10:00 pm ET/PT on Lifetime.

Have you heard of Pretty Wicked Moms?  Will you be watching June 4th?

FTC DISCLOSURE REQUIREMENT This Mama Loves aims to provide unbiased editorials. However, I wish to disclose that from time to time I may receive free products or other compensation from companies for blogger reviews.

Inglesina Trip Stroller (Giveaway) with Daily Mom

Daily Mom emailed to ask if I’d host a short one week giveaway for them to celebrate their site.  Knowing how much my readers love baby strollers, I agreed to host a giveaway for an Inglesina Trip Stroller!50-days-of-giveaways-on-dailymom-500

You might have heard of the new online magazine, Daily Mom, that just launched last month. It’s an amazing resource of posts and articles for the modern woman and mom. Imagine Pinterest worthy posts with useful information about all aspects of life – from parenting to beauty, fashion, green living, health, fitness, and more. Once you visit Daily Mom, you will be hooked – jumping from one post to another.

I have partnered with Daily Mom to host one of their giveaways as a part of an extensive 50 Days of Giveaways campaign to celebrate their launch. For 50 days, they will be giving away one awesome prize a day to thank their new readers.

So today we’re giving an opportunity for one lucky reader to win a Stroller from Inglesina.

inglesina trip stroller giveaway

Why should you have to sacrifice style, comfort, quality and features just for the convenience of a conventional, compact and lightweight umbrella stroller? You shouldn’t. And Inglesina doesn’t think so either. Be sure to check out their products on their website. Keep in the loop by following them on Facebook and Twitter.  And of course, enter below for a chance to win.

Check out Daily Mom’s Feature on Inglesina’s Trip Stroller by writer Danielle

The giveaway will run for a week, and there are only two mandatory entries with many optional ones. All you have to do is follow the directions below in the Rafflecopter widget. This giveaway is open to legal Continental US residents only.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

After you’ve entered the giveaway, be sure to browse Daily Mom and check out some of my favorite posts! I’m loving:

Why You Should Exfoliate Your Skin

Digital Spring Cleaning

Witch Hazel’s Magical Powers

The time I gave up nothing to be with my everything…for love

When I was little, and well into my teen years I hurled angry, hurtful words at my dad.  “You aren’t my FATHER” I would scream, when he’d try to parent me.  And worse.  As I grew older and matured, though, I started to see clearly and understand.  My dad was my father.  He is my father.  He may not have created me of his own flesh and blood, but who I am and my convictions are directly a result of his parenting- fathering- me.  I was asked to share with you about the Johnson &Johnson  “For All You Love”  campaign- specifically, to write a tribute about someone I love, someone I gave up something for, simply because I love them.

dad and me

When I was 5, it was my dad who taught me how to ride a two wheeler bike.  He made me get back on that bike I don’t know how many times (and goodness, I can’t imagine how his back must have ached by the end of that day from bending over to steady the back with his hands) and try again, Brett, keep TRYING for goodness sake!  When I fell and scraped my knee, my toes, my hands, my face, it was my dad who helped clean my wounds and bandage them.  It was my dad who taught me how to use a hammer.  He taught me the value of a dollar, and while I stubbornly refused to let that knowledge sink in until I learned about debt the hard way, I always did know it, deep down.

When I did stupid stuff  and got in trouble, it was my dad there yelling at me to use my head for something besides a hat rack.  He was there, not accepting the screwups, pushing me to do better and be the person he saw inside.  He was the one to give me consequences that seemed SO unjust, and so cruel, but he was the one who taught me that if and when you do screw up, you WILL have consequences and you have to learn from them.

When I got into a car accident with a friend and had major internal bruising, it was dad who worked from home for three weeks, going to the store to buy me weird foods he’d not heard of but that he knew would comfort me.

As my sister’s life slipped away, I remember my dad looking to see how WE were all doing, because that’s what the right thing to do was. How his heart must have ached, but he took care of us.  Mostly, of me, because I was the youngest and the least able to handle things.

When I got married, it was my dad who gave me away.  When I lost my first pregnancy, devastated beyond words, it was my dad who was just there, letting me grieve.  When my firstborn arrived, my dad drove almost 4  hours to meet the baby and then turned around and drove back home again.  A few days later, he and mom packed up the car with a week’s worth of groceries and supplies and came to   help.

When my mom started her journey through COPD and emphysema, my dad gave up HIS everything.  His retirement, his dreams of season-long Caribbean vacations with her…he gave it all up without a thought.  When I came up twice a month with my little ones, he gave up more of his self to spend time with us, to help me care for them, so that I, too, could spend time with mom.
J&J Campaign Manifesto

When mom died, dad moved to a new town where he knew no one, to be closer to his kids. He gave up his home, his neighbors, his friends, his community, just to be closer. He wanted to be able to easily drive the 90 minutes to see a baseball game, a baptism, a graduation. The shift began about then, where I began to sacrifice and give things up to be with my dad, my everything.

As dad’s ‘forgetfulness’ turned into dementia, and progressed to Alzheimer’s, the tables turned. Thankfully, he moved down here to CT before things got really bad, he could see the road he was heading down and didn’t want to be a burden. The shift was more clear and more prominent now- there weren’t going to be family outings or dad coming to games, they were simply overwhelming for him.  Dad was losing his voice and I (and the rest of my siblings) had to learn to be HIS voice, his champion, his friend.

Very quickly, we fell into a pattern.  Tuesday mornings I went to visit dad.  Sometimes we’d watch a TV show, but often, we’d look at photo albums.  Routine became crucial. Friday mornings, I went with my littlest one to visit dad.  I wanted to spend that time with dad.  Other things could wait.  They had to.

Dad’s decline’s been very steady.  He’s in the early late stages of Alzheimer’s now.  He’s got some heart issues and it’s clear that his time here with us on this earth won’t be prolonged.  There’s no “choice” for me- my dad is my choice.  He’s my DAD.  He’s my FATHER.

I have given up nothing and I’ve given up anything and I’ll give up everything for my dad.  We’ve had late night phone calls and visits to his facility in pajama pants and baseball caps, and I’ve not been at MOPS meetings, I’ve missed helping at the kids’ schools, coffee dates….but when it comes down to it, I’ve given up nothing to be with him.  How can I consider it “something” when he’s my everything?  He’s such a huge part of who I am today, he’s made me the woman, wife, friend, sister, daughter and mother that I am.

Who do you, would you, could you, have you given things up for?  Who do you love like this? 

As part of this campaign, recognizing their commitment to the health and well-being of moms and kids worldwide, J&J is also planning to donate $25K this Mother’s Day to Save the Children®: http://www.savethechildren.org

This is a sponsored conversation with The Motherhood. Opinions are my own.

My Mother’s Day Plans include unplugging it all #SocialBlackout

It’s Mother’s Day weekend and as much as I love you all, dear friends, I won’t be online much.  Especially not on Sunday, Mother’s Day itself.  Why is that?  I want to unplug, unwind and just chill.  All day.  I won’t lie, it will be hard, because I’ve always got my phone right there, or a tablet, laptop. I am participating in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consultingfor MetLife. I received a promotional item as a thank you for participatingIn other words, I’ll be taking part in the Social Blackout! Will you join me?

the kids who made me mama

 

My mom isn’t around to spend Mother’s Day with.  If she was here, she would tell me to unplug and BE with my family, my children, the ones who made me a mama.  And so, to honor her, that’s what my plan is. We are going out to breakfast at a new local place I just discovered (and oh goodness, the Cosmic Omelet is the name- if you are ever near Manchester, CT, you have to go!)…after breakfast, the kids and my husband are going to have lunch with my mother in law, and I’m off for a manicure and pedicure.  I also downloaded the last Sookie Stackhouse book to read.  The kids and hubby will come home in the afternoon and we’ll do a movie and dinner together, since it’s due to rain and rain all day long.  Can’t imagine doing it any other way.

social black out mothers day

Join the Mother’s Day movement every mom will be proud of: #SocialBlackout. It’s simple. In fact, it may be the easiest event you’ve ever attended. Just don’t show up.

Because mom has always been so attentive with us, we’re honoring her on Sunday, May 12 by turning our attention to her instead of our friends and feeds. Just set your profile pic with the official #SocialBlackout image, update your status with a warm Mother’s Day wish and say “arrivederci” to your social sites for a day.

How to spread the Mother’s Day movement:

1. Join the #SocialBlackout event page
2. Invite your friends to join
3. Log off Social Media on Mother’s Day

It’s really that simple.

 

Won’t you join me?  (Don’t worry, I’m sure I’ll be online today, tomorrow and Monday….but one day, I can give it all up!)

Tia Mowry’s all new Circle of Moms video series in partnership with Kia

Tia Mowry hosts the fun, enjoyable new Circle of Moms video series in partnership with Kia, along with her Circle of Moms friends Diane and Stacy.  I was asked to watch the latest video from Circle of Moms by POPSUGAR and share it with you.  When I opened the video I was quite pleasantly surprised to see that the first  topic for the episode I was to watch was about Free Range Parenting (Lenore Skenazy)- giving kids more independence and self-reliance.  This is something I fully believe in- I feel like I need to get my kids to a place where they can do things on their own- and the only way to do that is to let them learn by trying, doing and yes, even failing.  I also feel like I should be writing “we” and not “I” because my husband is fully on board with this thinking- but since this is my blog and my post, I’ll continue the “I” part.


The idea Free Range Parenting is so far from the trend of the helicopter mom and so in tune with my beliefs. I don’t think we’re helping kids when we do jump in and help solve conflicts every chance we get.  I think it’s not only ok but HEALTHY for children to try to work things out themselves.  Obviously there are exceptions.  But as a rule…I think we’re collectively way too involved in all aspects of our kids’ lives and kids aren’t learning how the world works anymore.  Even with my three, I’ve been working hard for the past few years to stay OUT of their tiny and huge conflicts to see what happens.  To my amazement, many times, they are able to negotiate and solve things in their way, without me.  It’s taking practice.  I think we need to remember that for hundreds of years, children have been able to successfully negotiate and navigate through childhood without constant adult interference.  It’s how children learn to be adults and successfully be adults!

tia mowry trips with tia circle of moms kia sorento

The  latest video from Circle of Moms by POPSUGAR also touches on co-sleeping, with three moms riding around (in the all New 2014 Kia Sorento, which is the only part of this episode and I believe all of them where the Kia piece comes into play), discussing why they do and don’t co-sleep. What I liked about this is that all three moms didn’t have the same opinion- there were comments and discussion but no blame, no negativity.  That “if it works in your family…” mantra again. We did not cosleep with my oldest- she’s um…an acrobatic sleeper, and no one would ever have gotten sleep.  With my son, my middle child, the cosleeping happened quite by accident- I feel asleep nursing him in bed one night and it was the first time he’d slept more than 90 minutes in a row.  Ever.  He was in our bed until about 8 months, when he stopped sleeping, we tried him in his crib, and he slept 6 straight hours that night and many after.  My littlest one coslept until about 7 months. I’d never have guessed I’d cosleep.  In fact, I’m sure it was on my “I’ll never” list that so many of us make before we actually have kids.  Live and learn.  And do what works in your family.

My favorite part of this episode was the discussion about fashion at school drop off.  Only busy parents can understand how awesome it is to see someone be able to pull together an outfit that includes black pajama pants, cover them with tall boots, spin pins and fabulous sunglasses, and look….well, not like me when I don’t have a chance to shower and stuff before dropoff.  If I had tall boots in my possession, I’d totally attempt that look, although I’d probably need to grab a pair of black pajama pants at the store first.  Something tells me the cute Peeps pajama pants I love so much would NOT work with the boots, ever.  Or the day after ever.

I think the Circle of Moms video series is cute, fun and quite modern.  Touching on what seems to be “in the moment” with today’s moms, helping us to connect and most importantly, reminding us of things that matter- like that mantra, “If it works in your house…” and the shorter time frame (about 9 minutes) means I can probably find the time to squeeze a whole episode in before someone needs help in the bathroom or a ride to softball, tball, or soccer practice.  And that, my friends, is a good thing.

Many thanks to Circle of Moms AND to Kia for creating this video series- I find it enjoyable and fun, I’ve always liked Tia Mowry, and I’m definitely going to keep my eyes open for the next weekly episodes!

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Kia through their partnership with Circle of Moms. While I was compensated to review the Kia Motors video and write a review, all opinions are my own.

A note to parents and college students about spending (and what might help)

Today I’m going to share, at the request of Visa Prepaid,  my experience at college freshman year- my experience about money and spending.  Or rather, overspending.  And just how quickly I was caught up in “free” credit cards and getting myself into debt. And no I’m not proud of it. But I’m real and I make mistakes and maybe  if I share my story someone else won’t.

I grew up in family that did not do “handouts.”  If we wanted something, we earned it or purchased it ourselves. The ultimate catch-22 I had growing up was wanting to drive a car- but in order to drive a car, I had to pay for insurance.  In order to pay for insurance, I had to get a job.  Living in a remote area of New Hampshire, this wasn’t really an easy thing to do without a car.  I may not have appreciated that my parents were so strict and set in their ways about money, but looking back now, 20 years later, I can tell you it was a wise move on their part, especially with “me” as a kid.  I was um…challenging.  Once in a while, you know, like in a blue moon?

cash

Anyway, when I went off to college, I had money in my “pocket” for the semester to buy books and anything else I might need.  Money that I earned working the entire summer for, saving away.  Of course, like many kids, I got to school and had FREEDOM and new friends and realized very quickly that I liked to party. A lot.  Sadly for my wallet, I did not like to party with the kegs of beer at frat parties, I liked girlie, fruity stuff.  Which costs more.  Within a month my money was gone, and I had books to show for it, but little else except the freshman 30 15.

I had supplies I needed to purchase for projects.  Plus, more parties….and then it was time to start Christmas shopping.  And it seemed like every time we turned around, there were young, hip looking 20-somethings with tables and displays offering FREE credit cards!  Plus, when you applied, you could have a FREE tshirt!  A frisbee!  A travel mug! And like many of my classmates, I applied for almost all of the cards.  Unfortunately for me, I was approved for all that I applied for.  Within a few months I had 11 credit cards.  ELEVEN.  It never occurred to me to stop and think about what was going on, what I was getting into, what lay ahead.  I just saw a way to finish paying for things I needed and “needed” without having to pay for all of it at once.

Would I do this all again? Absolutely not.  But I’m 20 years older than my 18 year old self and I know so much more about money and life and what actual needs are.  But parenting a kid like me, I think I’d probably take their summer savings and keep control of most of it here at home, depositing amounts on something like a Visa Prepaid Card so that yes, they could access their own money, but I could also help to keep them on track and to learn to be responsible for their money before it was too late.

My debt wasn’t frivilous for long.  Soon after graduating, even with a Bachelor’s Degree, I wasn’t making more than $7/hour and it wasn’t anywhere near enough to live on so I did odd jobs and babysat whenever possible.  I still didn’t make enough to cover expenses and was more often than not charging gas and groceries (and yes, cute new boots- I’m a slow learner I suppose). At the peak, I had over $25000 in credit card debt.  All by myself. Do you know what I have to show for it?  That stupid “Freshman 15″ which really was 30 and has gone away and come back repeatedly over the years.  No fun trips, nothing substantial.

As parents, we have to teach our children about finances.  Not just about what the money is, and that we have to earn it ourselves, but also how to manage it, and how to plan.  Today, we have 1 credit card that we use whenever possible, because the rewards for using it are great.  We have a backup card, and 2 store cards.  That’s it.  I’ll never have more again.  Too dangerous.  Too risky.

I can tell you that when my kids are older and start being away from us for periods of time and travelling or going away to school, we’ll be seriously considering the options available like Visa PrePaid cards so that we can keep a bit of a tab on things and hopefully keep educating the kids so they learn before they get into a mess like I did.  I’d rather they get mad and yell and scream at me for “only” depositing a few hundred at a time into their prepaid account than have them end up like me.  It’s kind of like a best of both worlds option  in my mind- the kids can have use of their money but need to check in with parents before adding more money- so if they are spending like crazy, parents can know right away and try to help solve issues.

I am blogging on behalf of Visa Prepaid and received compensation for my time from Visa for sharing my views in this post, but the views expressed here are solely mine, not Visa’s. Discover more at http://www.VisaPrepaid.com or view more Visa Prepaid videos at http://www.youtube.com/visaprepaid.

I would like to thank One Direction for getting my child to brush her teeth properly. (Want to win One Direction tickets?)

So my 7 year old is just.like.me. For good and for bad, we’re very alike.  So to say we butt heads on things at times is well, a slight understatement.  Mostly it’s just both of us having a strong personality and a desire to do what we want when we want to.  And for the past several months, my 7 year old has been resistant and downright crabby about brushing her teeth for long enough, properly, and even at all.  It makes for some very animated early morning conversations before most people are even contemplating hitting snooze again on their alarms, and for a high tension bedtime.  Little miss had her first (tiny) cavity a few weeks ago and when the dentist said the same things to her that MOM said, I think it scared her a little bit.  That, and the discomfort in the chair. There are certain things that are non negotiable in our family and proper dental care is one of them.  Brushing happens. 

Print

One thing my girl does like is music. Dancing.  Singing.  So when I heard about ARM & HAMMER Tooth Tunes featuring One Direction, I figured it was worth a shot to see if it motivates her.  She’s rocking out for the entire 2 required brushing minutes and NOT COMPLAINING.  Shaking her little tush and brushing away without a word. It’s marvelous.  A way to get something fun out of something she can’t stand to do? Happy mama over here!

All because of a toothbrush.  To be honest, I love that little toothbrush.  Tooth Tunes, you have converted me. I did not what I was missing out on with you. Well, Tooth Tunes and One Direction.  ARM & HAMMER Tooth Tunes featuring One Direction is the only brand of toothbrushes that plays One Direction in North America. 

one direction toothtunes

 

These Tooth Tunes featuring One Direction come in 2 song styles- “What Makes Her Beautiful” and “One Thing”– each song lasts 2 minutes so kids are encouraged to keep brushing that recommended time. Tooth Tunes plays the music with vibrations through the bristles right into their mouths  so you can hear it while you brush.  Super fun, and if it’ll keep the kids brushing long enough?  Worth every penny of the $9.99 price tag. (I see a coupon on the site…so print that before you go buy!). One Direction is a HOT band right now and most kids want to have cool music to listen to. I think this is a great marriage of a need and entertainment!

Now I just have to hope that either my 5 1/2 year old decides he likes the One Direction Tooth Tunes as much as his sister – or check out one of their other options. I see several on there I know he’ll love. Some of the other brushes available:

All Day” performed by Cody Simpson

Dynamite” performed by Taio Cruz

I Gotta Feeling” performed by Black Eyed Peas

If I Ruled the World” performed by Big Time Rush

All of which he knows and adores. I’m going to have a very noisy bathroom at brushing time but I’m ok with that. If it gets the kids motivated to brush and brush properly, it can be the loudest bathroom ever!

If you have kids like mine who maybe aren’t so thrilled about brushing properly, you might want to give Tooth Tunes a try.  You may have a happy result like we have had!

We have some exciting news to share with you! Church & Dwight Co., Inc., the maker of ARM & HAMMER™, is excited to announce the Brush with Tooth Tunes™, Rock with One Direction Sweepstakes! People can enter for a chance to win the Grand Prize – four tickets to a One Direction concert in August 2013.  100 First Prize Winners will receive One Direction prize packs, with One Direction merchandise.

Disclaimer: I am part of the Mom It Forward blogger network. Mom It Forward and ARM & HAMMER™ Tooth Tunes™ partnered in support of this campaign. ARM & HAMMER™ Tooth Tunes™ compensated me for participation in this campaign. However, all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

Happy (Almost) Pi Day! Let’s Celebrate with…Pie! (Giveaway) #MarieCallenders

My son and I had a pie lunch date this week.  This is kind of a BIG DEAL.  Big sister was at school and little sister went down for an early nap because she wasn’t feeling well.  I’d planned on making myself one of Marie Callender’s Chicken Pot Pies for lunch because it was a cold, rainy, sleety and dreary day and I wanted some comfort food.  My son’s never been interested in pot pie before, but this day, he couldn’t stop asking me questions about it.  I asked if he wanted to try a bit, and after looking at me surprised (that I thought to ask or that I finally did ask, I’m not so sure) he took a bite. Another bite.  After he’d gobbled up half the pie I told him I was going to make a second one and WE were going to have a Pie Date!   Pi Day is the mathematical holiday but remember, in January comes Pie Day (and yes, we did celebrate that too. We like our pie).

pie date for pi day

Our lunch was delightful.  My little guy has a pretty good sense of humor but he’s always surrounded by two sisters who don’t like to let anyone get a word in edgewise (some say they get that from me, to which I plead the 5th…), so when it’s just him and me, I have a lot of fun.  We talked all about his day at school and I started explaining to him about Pi Day coming soon and how I think we should have another pie date to celebrate.  After accepting that Pi Day does not actually include presents, he asked lots of questions about Pi.  His favorite subject was math so hearing about a holiday to celebrate math made him pretty intrigued.

pies for pi day

So we had our pre-Pi Day date, and this week we’ll celebrate the actual Pi Day, and then in a few weeks, we’ll celebrate Easter with my in laws…and guess what we’ll be having for dessert?  Well, aside from the normal Easter-ish type of candies…we’ll be having pie!  My daughter saw the containers from our pie date in the recycle bin after she got home from school and wanted some Key Lime Pie.  She LOVES key lime pie.  We decided that would be a really fun way to end our Easter dinner!  It’s a busy day and not everyone has time to bake from scratch- Marie Callender’s pies can save a lot of time and energy so you can sit back and enjoy the moments with your loved ones.

Marie Callender’s has a pie for every occasion.  Or just about.  I think with pie you can kind of have some leeway on occasions to eat it.  Like if the day happens to end in Y, you can probably assume it’s ok to just have a little.  Or a lot.  I mean, you could really have pie for lunch and dinner and pie for dessert.  I would probably recommend you mix that up a bit and not eat exclusively pie for a day, though.

Be sure to get your  Marie Callender’s printable coupon good for  $1.50 coupon off any pie!  Don’t forget to enter the codes for Child Hunger Ends Here on specially marked packages either in my sidebar or below:

One reader will win FIVE coupons for FREE Marie Callender’s Pies!  
a Rafflecopter giveaway

This is a sponsored post with The Motherhood.  Opinions are my own.

Come talk about health tips for our families at the #CDCFlu Twitter Party March 5th

#cdcfluI don’t know about you but having kids also means having germs, in excess.  Three kids in school just means more chances for more germs!  Typically, February is the month my family is sickest- somehow we escaped that this year, although all three kids had pneumonia over Christmas.  I’m always up for finding new ways to keep my family healthy in cold and flu season, aren’t you? Come join us March 5th as we chat about this!What: How long is flu season? When is the best time to receive the flu vaccine? What are healthy flu-fighting habits to teach children? We’ll be answering these questions and more during this informative Twitter party! The Motherhood is joining the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in their mission to create the expertise, information, and tools that people and communities need to protect their health. Join us to share and listen to helpful health tips for your family!When: Tuesday, March 5, 1 p.m. ET (the party will last one hour)

Where: We’ll be on Twitter – follow the #CDCFlu hashtag to track the conversation. You can see the details and RSVP via this Twtvite: http://bit.ly/XYyMp9

Hashtag: #CDCFlu

 

Hosts: @theMotherhood, @CooperMunroe, @EmilyMcKhann, @CDCFlu

TweetGrid for the party: http://bit.ly/13fnEfp

For more information: Visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website at http://www.cdc.gov/
This is a sponsored post with The Motherhood. Opinions are my own.

Blick Art Materials Helps to Support Art with Art Room Aid

I’m guessing that you’ve probably heard of Blick Art Materials.  Some of you may even have had the pleasure of visiting on of their stores!  We have one about 45 minutes from my house- I need to get over there. I haven’t been since we moved to this house going on 8 years now. Blick Art Materials focuses on offering quality products, huge selection, and a skilled, knowledgeable staff who not only know to help you with what you are looking for but also are able to give suggestions and options for other things for educational and professional needs.

art room aid blick art materials

Not only does Blick Art Materials but they have also started a wonderful project called Art Room Aid which they started in 2009. Clearly Blick Art Materials has always supported arts in education, including art scholarships and helping to create lesson plans to meet core curriculum standards to help educators- Art Room Aid kind of took things a step further.  Art Room Aid provides the tools to easily share your dreams and funding needs without complicated applications or fees that take away from contributions. If you’re an arts advocate you can quickly locate a project that resonates with you and make a high-quality contribution that will go directly to a project in need.

Art is all around us, in everyday life and on special occasions.  It’s in our work, our play, our love, and so much more.  We need to find ways to support arts in education the way Blick Art Materials is with Art Room Aid- or similar!  I understand that the economy is rough but it makes me so sad that the arts are one of the first things to “go” in so many school districts.  I try to support however I can- sending glue in when I find sales, or markers, crayons, supplies- in the hopes that that can free up some money to do other things.

I was very happy to be able to offer my son’s Kindergarten teacher the chance to work together on this so that she could create a project based on her ideas and not just on what was available due to budget constraints.  I won’t lie, she was very excited to have this chance.  I was excited to share it with her.  She’s really excited to do a Paper Flowers Project with the children in her class, which goes along with a writing activity she’s got planned for April of this year.  Please visit and check out the Paper Flowers Project List for Mrs. R and we’d love if you could support the classroom, or share this with someone who may decide they’d like to support.  Every little bit helps!  (Clicking the image below also will take you to the project list page)

art room aid supply list

How do you feel about arts in education?  Do you feel as I do? I want to know! I also want to know what your favorite projects were in the classroom growing up. 

Check out this infographic called Brushstroke of Genius

brushstroke of genius infographic

This is a sponsored post with The Motherhood.