mommy&everything

trying to find myself and humor in life

Archive for the category “blogging”

Go Me!

Today’s post, which was the Daily Prompt,  was my 200th post!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Go me!!

Thanks for listening, you may go back to your regularly scheduled activity 🙂

 

 

 

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Daily Prompt: Say Your Name

Today’s Daily Prompt Write about your first name: Are you named after someone or something? Are there any stories or associations attached to it? If you had the choice, would you rename yourself?

My name is Nicole  which means “victor for the people.”

Exciting right?

My entire family has called me Nikki for as long as I can remember. Here’s a fun fact, I didn’t even know my real name was Nicole until I started pre-school and the teacher called “Nicole”.

There was also a period when I was Little Nikki since I have an uncle named Nick but I’ll save that for another blog.

I was never thrilled with my name. Growing up in the 70s and 80s (damn, did I give my age away?), there were very few Nicoles.

Miss Nancy NEVER said my name on “Romper Room” in her damn Magic Mirror. And you would be hard-pressed to find “nicole” on a comb or mirror in the local 5&10 store.

Nope, all the Jennifers and Marys monopolized that market. 

Once, I begged my mom to change my name to Karen after a Mousketeer on The Mickey Mouse Club but she said no.

But whhhyyyyyy?????? I would whine to her. WHY did you name me Nicole???? I hate my name! (insert pouting face).

Mom never really gave me a really good reason why my name was Nicole, just that her and my dad liked it.

In college, I switched things up a bit and went by Nikki. My reasoning was new life chapter – new name.

My college and high school friends call me Nikki. My husband and his family call me Nicole (don’t ask) and co-workers call me Nicole. However, on occasion I will answer to Danielle as I have been told that I “look like a Danielle.”

Nowadays (this is a word, I Googled it), I mostly answer to Mom or Mommy – the BEST name ever unless it is 3am or it is said on a repeat loop (lol).

Not that long ago, one of my sons told me he hated his name and wanted to change it.

WHAT?! WHY? Do you know how many months Daddy and I agonized over what to name you?? I LOVE your name and you can’t change it!

Payback sucks huh? 😉

Thanks for reading have a good week!

ps – the Urban Dictionary defines “nicole” as  an awesome person that is often imitated but never duplicated. Take that all you Jennifers!

Throw Back Post…2013

Wow the things that you find in your blog “drafts”. Since I am ever-so-slowly working my way back into blogging, I thought it would be fun to peruse the 74 “drafts” I had sitting in my draft folder.

Holy Crap – 74???!!

Some of the drafts were just titles, back when I was a regular blogger, I would always start a post with the title. Once I had the title, the rest just fell into place. Now, 4 years later, I am lucky to even come up with a thought, let alone a title.

At the bottom of my drafts there were some posts with no titles and that is where I found this. I can remember this day like it was yesterday and the emotions are all still fresh. I can’t believe I never posted it.

Well better late than never. Ladies and gentlemen I bring you Nic’s TB post circa 2013….

Sometimes being a mom isn’t so bad

My son Jake was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder about 21/2 years ago. Since is diagnosis in January 2011, the  has been a roller coaster ride of emotions and “stuff” .

Jake has really good days, really bad days and everything in between. However, through it all, he has put on a brave face and is almost always smiling (unless he is angry). When he is truly happy there is nothing more beautiful than his big, blue eyes looking back at you.

The last couple weeks I have been in an “ASD SUCKS” kinda mood. I know… it can be so much worse; I should be thankful Jake is doing so well;  there are so many others that are worse off yada yada yada. Still, when it is your kid and you have to watch him/her struggle daily it doesn’t matter  – it just sucks.

This past weekend, however, was A-Mazing with J. It started last Friday when J’s school hosted a talent show. J attends a school for kids with special needs so I was really not expecting much from a talent show.

Jake’s teacher, the beloved Miss Heidi, had mentioned that she had worked with the class for weeks on a routine but kept it a secret. All we were told was that the kids should wear black pants and a white shirt.

The morning of the show, I asked J what he was performing in school. He gave me a shy smile and did some hand motions that made no sense to me at all. Ok, whatever I thought as I got him ready for the bus.

I arrived at his school to a packed parking lot and I panicked a little that I was late.  Quickly, I was able to grab 2 seats, my husband was meeting me there, and anxiously waited for the show to start.

The principal handed out programs and under Jake’s class it said  ”My Girl”. Now it all made sense!! Jake is in a class with 5 boys and 1 girl. OMG this is going to be awesome….but will J do it or freak out????

J was act #6 and it felt like FOREVER until his class got on “stage.” Finally I heard the music and in walked Jake and his class.  The boys were wearing top hats and bow ties and the little girl sat in the middle on a bench covered in pink tulle.

This kids took their places and did the entire routine to perfection! I could not believe my baby was doing this in front of a room packed with people – students, teachers and parents!  Never would that happened 2 years ago. To me it was simply a miracle.

After the song was over, the kids took their bow and the room erupted in applause as the teachers shot confetti into the air. They did it – Jake did it!

I don’t think I will ever be able to describe the feelings I had when Jake walked off the stage. It was a combination of so many emotions and feelings all mixed together. I just remember thinking “everything will be ok…. Jake will be alright” as tears ran down my face.

Daily Prompt: Happy Endings

Happy New Year to everyone out in the great blogosphere! I have been on vacation for the last 2 weeks so this cold Monday has been a little slow for me. If I am able to get into a work groove by Thursday, it will be a miracle.

My blogs have been few and far between the past year or so but today’s Daily Prompt seemed like a good way to jump back in to the blogging pool.

Today’s  question: tell us about something you’ve tried to quit. Did you go cold turkey, or for gradual change? Did it stick?

First answer that popped into my head was Facebook!

My feelings toward quitting Facebook can best be summed up by Michael Corleone in The Godfather: Part III

Just when I thought I was out… they pull me back in.

I have tried to stay away and/or limit by Facebook use. Last year, I even went so far as to remove the app from my phone (gasp!). But no matter what, I always go back.

Where else can you get a recipe, take a quiz to see which Friends character you are most like AND see pictures of your aunt’s high school friend’s grandchildren?

One of my New Year’s “goals” (I read on Facebook it is better to have a goal rather than a resolution) is to limit (I knew better than to flat out quit) my Facebook intake and so far I am kicking ass! Day 4 of 366 and I have not been on Facebook once – yipee!!

How long will my Facebook fast last??? I have no idea but I promise to post an update on my timeline to keep everyone updated 😉

Happy Monday!!

Lucky number 7 – Daily Prompt Seven Wonders

I am not a frequent participant in the Daily Prompt but today’s was a good one Seven Wonders.

Khalil Gibran once said that people will never understand one another unless language is reduced to seven words. What would your seven words be?

Wow, this was an easy one for a change. My words are (drum roll please)….

There is always something to laugh about

I use humor and/or sarcasm, who am i kidding it’s 99.9% sarcasm, as a defense mechanism. When life gives me lemons, it is just easier to make fun of myself or laugh about whatever the lemon dujour may be. It takes the pressure off and lightens the mood a bit.

Sometimes my humor is not always appreciated and sometimes people don’t always “get it” (shame on them!) but who cares right?

Life is not always fun and it is definitely not always easy. However, if you can find something to laugh about it just makes everything better for a little while at least.

Happy Almost Thursday!

Snips and snails and puppy dog tails

Happy Hump Day!!! Can you believe it is already Wednesday and halfway to the weekend??

Yesterday’s post was a little serious so I thought today I’d lighten it up a little. Sound good? Great!

For those of you who do not know me,  I am a mom to four boys, twins who are 9, a 7yo and my baby who is 5.

Families with 4 children are not the norm anymore so when people find out I have 4 kids AND that they’re all boys, it usually leads to a stunned look and/or a gasp.

Inevitably questions follow so today I thought I’d share and answer some of my favorite questions from the past 9 years  – please note these are in no specific order and I have been asked every single one of them

  • No I am not trying to start my own (insert sport) team
  • Why yes it is always “fun” at my house, you should stop over sometime without calling first
  • OMG yes I know how LUCKY I am to have four boys and not girls. After all, girls are SO much harder to raise than boys and I will be SO happy when they are teenagers
  • Yes, twins run in my family
  • Of course they are all best friends (see #2)
  • No actually they do not ALL play sports but we still love them anyway
  • Yes I know, my food bill will sky-rocket but for now it’s ok since they exist on Elios pizza, Eggo chocolate chip pancakes and chicken nuggets
  • No I am not trying for the girl – you know how old I am right?
  • Yes I am the “queen” of my household  and treated as such (again see #2)
  • Nope, I did not plan on having 4 children, I do not come from a large family and no, before having kids I didn’t really like kids
  • Yes, the blond one is mine and as a matter of fact, his dad DOES have blond hair
  • Yup they are all mine – would I voluntarily take 4 boys out if they were not related to me?
  • Hmmm, it’s hard to say if boys “run in my family” – they do now!
  • No, it’s NEVER quiet
  • Yes, there were (and still are) lots of hand me downs but that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t love to buy something cute and girly
  • I don’t know if I really save a lot on clothes but I do get away with only buying 1 pair of sneakers for them
  • Yes, I know it is very sad that I was never blessed with a girl but I am sure God feels differently (this was said to me in the Carters outlet when the twins were 3 months old)
  • At this point it is hard to imagine any of them taking care of me in my old age but I guess I have a 1 in 4 chance
  • Nope, no drama in my house. I must have dreamed the episode this morning when I was told that I am no fun ever! or when the tears started because I said it was time to take a shower
  • Oh I know I will get to have my own “daughters” when the boys grow up and get married. You know how much women LOVE their mothers-in-law
  • Thank you but I am SOOOOO not managing it or “doing it”, really I am just faking it (wink wink)

Thanks for reading.

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This is what at least one of my boys looks like on any given day

Cinderella

I was having lunch with someone the other day when we got to talking about kids’ Halloween costumes.  Since I have 4 boys, my family’s costumes usually lean toward a superhero or video game character. In years past we have been Super Mario, Spiderman, Blue Power Ranger, some guy with a bow from the Avengers, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (Leo and Raph) and The Creeper from Minecraft.

During the conversation my lunch mate made a comment about princesses and the movie Cinderella and how the fairy tale went against some of her feminist beliefs. I made a sarcastic comment about Prince Charming (shocking I know) before changing the subject but her comment stuck with me.

Cinderella is my FAVORITE Walt Disney “princess”. When I was little I loved the Prince Charming aspect – heck, I love that now and would not turn down Charming if he appeared at my doorstep in a fully loaded SUV.

However, the real reason I really loved Cindy was her dress. Seriously have you looked at it? It is the BEST princess dress. It’s got tulle, bows, ribbon AND a hoop skirt! What else could a princess ask for? She even managed to get a diamond tiara and an updo before she left for the ball. Cindy was styling!

Cinderella premiered on February 15, 1950 so yes, I can see how its themes are not feminist friendly. However, there were some good things that came out of that movie that we should appreciate and applaud.

  • Survival
    Cinderella was a survivor. She was a teenage orphan forced to live as a servant with her horrible stepmother and 3 stepsisters (also in their late teens or older) after her dad died. The dad clearly did not have a will or a good attorney since his only daughter was a servant in her own house but I guess everyone makes mistakes right?

    Anyway, Cinderella should have been a bitter and depressed person moping around and hating life. However, the girl was always smiling and singing and making the best of her situation. Teens today sulk for a week if they lose their iPhone or Wi-Fi connection and here’s Cindy trying to make the best of her situation. Cindy did what she needed to do even if that meant being nice to the evil people who made her to live in the attic and wear a ratty brown dress every day.

    Cinderella never lost hope that someday she would be able to escape her miserable life and essentially live happily ever after.

  • Confidence
    Cindy went to that ball all alone, think about that. She walked into a packed ballroom and did not know a single person. Could you do that?

    When I was 23 I went to a co-worker’s wedding alone and let me tell you, it is no easy feat, especially before the alcohol kicks in! Everywhere you turn there are people in groups laughing and talking and there you are all alone trying to find somewhere to sit or lean.

    Cindy didn’t even have an iPhone that she could pretend to check. Nope, she had to go into that ballroom with her head held high and own that room! Plus, when the Prince was chasing after her (as the clock was striking midnight) she just left him on the steps (see even then this girl played by The Rules)!

  • Sense of style
    When Cindy first heard about the ball, she and her friends gathered anything materials they could find to help her make the perfect dress – very similar to Molly Ringwald’s character Andy in the movie “Pretty in Pink.” The result was a beautiful dress that would have blown up Instagram.  Plus she could run in 3-in glass heels which is amazing in and of itself!

I know that you cannot live your life waiting for a fairy-tale because real life problems can’t be solved with a glass slipper. But every once in a while wouldn’t it be nice if they did exist?

Thanks for reading and have a Happy Hump Day!

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My Clone

Earlier today I was texting with Mrs. rambling away, as much as you can ramble in a text without the textee losing interest, about back to school night and how this is my first year having to see 4 classrooms to see in one night.

I am a control freak when it comes to the kids but even I had to admit defeat with getting myself to 4 classrooms in an hour and was forced to enlist the husband to come along tonight.  This is husband’s first back to school night and he has no idea what he is in for.

In years past,  I have tried to describe the classroom packed with parents and grandparents and kids (god forbid we leave some of our extended family home) all vying for a minute alone with the teacher to discuss little Johnny’s snack or Mary’s broken pencil box.

Anyway, Jeter was sympathizing and mentioned parent/teacher conferences before getting back to our discussion on how I was over George Clooney when all of the sudden it hit me

Holy Crap! Parent/ teacher conference sign-ups are tonight! Crap! How the hell am I going to manage FOUR conferences this year???????!!!!!

In years past it was just the twins’ conferences I had to deal with and their teachers worked with me to schedule back-to-back conferences. This year is a whole new ballgame. The teachers are still getting to know me and don’t fully appreciate how witty and lovable I am (wink wink).

I may have texted a UGH or GRRRR to Jeter prompting her to reply that I needed a clone before moving on to another topic.

Later I was drafting an oh-so-important letter for work when my mind started to drift and before long I was dreaming about my clone.

What would she look like? What could she do for me? Would she have my same name something more hip?

While most people would prefer to have their clone look exactly like them, hence the reason for actually having a clone, I have decided that my clone to be a better version of myself.

Please join me in meeting and greeting my clone Nik. I hope you love her as much as I do.

Nik will be 5 inches taller AND 10 pounds thinner making her roughly a size 6 which is PERFECTION. In addition, her weight will always stay the same so she will NEVER EVER be forced to have a latte with skim milk or feel shamed for eating pretzels with the lame sandwich she brought for lunch.

She’ll have curly hair, however, her curls will be the perfect combination of volume and bounce that are never frizzy. Her roots never show and she will not have to worry about plucking random grey hairs in the bathroom at work or before an important event where other moms will be present.

Those permanent dark circles under Nik’s eyes, the “hereditary” ones…adios! And so long adult acne!  Damn, Nik will save a fortune not having to buy concealer.

Nik’s a size 6 so getting dressed is a piece of cake. Heck she can’t wait to get dressed because she will look good in everything she owns.

There will be no sense of panic when trying on shorts from last summer or jeans that haven’t been worn since she went to On the Border and took full advantage of the unlimited chips and salsa even after eating a handful of peanut M&Ms at work earlier in the day.

Her clothes will be classic and of a higher quality of what I normally wear. For example, Nik will not  wear Old Navy boyfriend jeans that don’t cuff quite the same as the Level 99 boyfriend jeans worn by super cool fashion bloggers or the hip moms that live in the next town over.

Nik’s patent leather shoes will not be scuffed and the heels on her pumps won’t be damaged from getting caught in the sidewalk while racing into work.

The minivan will be dent and scratch free because Nik is an expert at parallel parking and can back into a parking space like a pro.

Anytime Nik opens her wallet there will be cash – no more ATM fees – and the chip on her debit card will always work in the new check-out machines at Target.

Nik will be an expert and organization and planning and will never have to worry about missing homework, tests to be signed or field trip permission slips. Her credit card payments will never be late and her teeny, tiny box of a house will always look neat and organized.

She  will have one of those personalities that people are drawn to so she will never have to worry about not being included by a group of women at her kids’ sporting event, PTO meeting or department breakfast at work.  People will not look over her when she is speaking or have their eyes glaze over when she is sharing a weekend anecdote.

Nik will always have something clever to say and will never get that spaced out look on her face when colleagues are discussing topics that are way above her pay grade.

She will be assertive but in a good way so the Child Study Team (regular or “summer”) will not make crap up or talk down to her about a “rule” that didn’t exist until that very meeting.

The boys’ teachers will welcome her emails and thank her for being an involved parent and not respond with tone because she dared to ask what the hell a math fact was and (gasp!) how a third grader can become fluent in math factese.

Nik will always make healthy meals that the boys LOVE and will have the family’s weekly meals planned out on Sunday mornings before getting all 4 boys to church at 10am with a smile.

Nik will have the gift of patience and strength to help her get through those god damn reading logs,  f’d up common core math homework sheets, IEPs, autism challenges, behavior issues and sibling bickering because one brother sat too close to another on the big couch or took the last charger for their iPod.

Lastly, Nik will not yell all the time like when she needs to explain to the 9yo that,  yes a shower is necessary after football practice in the rain or when the 5yo ignores the 10 times his name was called because he is watching a Teen Titans rerun on On Demand.

God I LOVE Nik, don’t you?? I just sent her to Starbucks to grab me a Pumpkin Spice Latte, I hope she brings home a biscotti too.  J

30 Days of Thanks: Day 12

This month I am participating in “30 Days of Thanks” with my friend and fellow blogger CC at A Working Mom Today. Hope you can check us out 🙂

Since it’s Tuesday, I have decided to make today a “Tuesday Two-fer” day of thanks  – I am typing this before my second cup of coffee so please humor me.

Day 12 (part 1): SNOW

I hate snow. Yes, it’s pretty when it first falls and it makes the holidays look and feel very festive. BUT it is also a PITA. People can’t drive in it, I have to shovel and wear boots and it looks dirty and depressing when it’s piled up in the mall parking lot for the weeks following a storm.

However, my kids LOVE it. I am not sure where this love comes from, but starting last night, one of the twins came up to me with this excited look on his face. Oh no, I thought, what happened downstairs??

Mommy?? Did you hear…it’s going to SNOW TOMORROW!! he said. Phew…no one is hurt I thought before answering Yes it is, isn’t that great??!

This morning I was in the bathroom when I heard a stampede coming up the stairs. MOMMY! MOMMY! MOMMY IT’S SNOWING!!! Come look!!

I went to the window and there were 4 little heads all crammed trying to get a glimpse of the wet snow falling from the sky. The looks on their faces was nothing short of pure joy.

To be that young and happy and untainted by life….

Day 12 (part 2): Facebook

I have a love/hate relationship with Facebook. Yes, it is one of the first things I check on my phone when the alarm goes off – you never know what all important item will have been posted in the 8 hours I was sleeping.

I like keeping up with friends and family, seeing pictures and knowing what is going on in their lives. I LOVE the funny eCards people share, recipes (that I never make) and cute/funny/inspirational quotes that show up from time to time.

I HATE the incessant bragging and showing off “friends” sometimes do. Seriously, is your family REALLY that great??? If so, can I PLEASE have whatever it is that you are taking? (lol)

I am not a fan of the political rants – aren’t we not supposed to discuss religion and politics?

Still I can not make myself quit Facebook. It’s like a car wreck I can’t stop staring at. I guess as with most things you take the good with the bad.

Ummmm, I thought she was thankful for Facebook? Why is she ranting???

As I mentioned earlier, I do like the witty/funny pictures and sayings that get posted from time to time. Here are a few of my recent favorites hope you enjoy.

Have a good day!

YES Please!!

YES Please!!

This is me!!!!!

This is me!!!!!

I may print this and hang it up as a reminder

I may print this and hang it up as a reminder

30 Days of Thanks: Days 8-11

This month I am participating in “30 Days of Thanks” with my friend and fellow blogger CC at A Working Mom Today.  Hope you can check us out 🙂

Happy Monday afternoon friends out there in the great blogosphere. I apologize for not getting this posted in the morning but better late than never right?

As I mentioned last Thursday in my Day 7 post, weekends are difficult for blogging since I reside in Casa Chaos with my 4 boys. This past weekend was no exception since I attempted to potty train the almost 4yo (not to self: hire Supernanny Jo next time).

I didn’t want to skip days of thanks so instead, I thought it would be fun to summarize Days 8-11. Here we go:

Day 8:

It was Friday and I had my annual appoint at my ob/gyn. Ladies, this may not seem like ANYTHING to be thankful for BUT keep in mind that my children were ALL HOME FROM SCHOOL last Thursday AND Friday so this doctor appointment allowed me 2 hours of FREEDOM!!!!

Wait there is more. I have gone to this practice for 10 years and was a regular there for probably 5 years (back to back pregnancies will do that to you). I know everyone in the office so it surprised me when a new nurse called me back to check my blood pressure.

As she looked through my humongous file, she paused at my birthday and said OMG, is that age right?? I would have sworn you were in your EARLY 30s.

Needless to say she is now my new BFF and I am thankful for the compliment.

Day 9:

This was a tough day to have thanks for anything since potty training was not going over well with L. I have NEVER seen a child be so stubborn about peeing!

Seriously, I spent over $50 on “big boy underwear” AND a stupid Teenage Mutant Ninja turtle car  AND a potty chart AND stuffed him with candy and the kid would not pee!

This went on for hours and hours until I heard a little voice say Mommy…look it’s coming out.

O-M-G I have never in my life been so excited to see someone pee in a potty before!!!! Me and the other boys all cheered and told L how great he did!

Well all that has worn off and L is still being stubborn about the potty. However, I am thankful for the brief period of unconditional joy I felt Saturday afternoon.

Day 10:

I was able to go to the mall ALONE for an entire hour AND The Loft had additional 40% off sale.

Day 11:

Hmmmm what to be thankful for on a cold Monday morning?????

I was going to post something serious about sympathy and compassion but quickly remembered  the trouble I got myself into last winter. So instead I am thankful that the sweater dress I bought yesterday (for $25) fits!

Hope you have a great week!

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