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The No Drama Mama



Estate planning tips to protect your special needs child

Jan 1, 2009

Every New Year we come up with resolutions that have a familiar ring: I'm going to lose those 10 (or more) pounds, I'm going to faithfully work out, I'm going to use the dining room table for something other than that stack of mail.   This year, consider resolutions that will have a lifelong ...

5 Reasons My Trip to NYC Made Me Appreciate Living in the Hudson Valley

Jan 3, 2017

This week my husband decided that we should do an impromptu trip to New York City to see the Christmas lights and the tree at Rockefeller Center before they are taken down for the season. Since we didn’t get a chance to see any lights this year and because a trip to the big city is always an adventu...

4 Life Lessons From Five Years Without A Cell Phone

Dec 27, 2016

I know what you’re thinking. How did you survive for FIVE long years without a cell phone? Surprisingly well. This year I asked my husband for a cell phone for Christmas. I felt like I was finally ready to take on an additional expense now that my blog is growing. After my site was temporarily shut...

A Mother’s Hands Are Never Empty

Dec 20, 2016

I heard it again the other day, “Oh, you have your hands full!” I was pushing two kids in my shopping cart, while my oldest daughter walked beside us as we navigated the aisles of Walmart. None of my kids were acting up. Nobody was yelling, pushing or annoying each other. There was nothing to warra...

4 Tips for Raising Confident Girls

Dec 13, 2016

I was not a confident child . As a matter of fact, when I was my oldest daughter’s age I was evaluated for speech therapy because I was very quiet in class. Turns out my speech was fine. It was my confidence that needed work. Looking back, I can see that my mom wasn’t a very confident woman. I wish...

One More Kiss Goodnight:Remembering Sandy Hook

Dec 6, 2016

  The Pressure of the Holidays This time of year is filled with joy and excitement for the holidays. There is so much pressure on parents to give their kids a “good holiday” with lots of presents, big family meals and seven foot tall trees trimmed to perfection. The magic of the holidays seems to co...

Why Every Mom Has “Man Cold” Envy

Nov 29, 2016

As you can probably guess, as I’m typing this post I have a cold. I’m also wishing it were a “man cold” and not a “mom cold.” What’s the difference? Let me break it down for you. What Is A “Man Cold?” If I had a “man cold” I would be able to take off of work and take a nap. I could drink orange jui...

5 Steps To Rock Your DIY Holiday Card

Nov 22, 2016

I love the idea of doing holiday portraits, but the thought alone sends me into an anxiety-ridden tailspin. I have to get three kids dressed in holiday attire, do their hair, and get them to the portrait studio on time. Then I pray we get a photographer who takes their time and makes sure we have s...

17 Practically Free Ways To Give Your Kids A Magical Holiday

Nov 15, 2016

When we become grownups, we sometimes forgot what really makes the holidays a magical time of year. We think we can purchase it at the store. We try so hard to either give our kids the kind of childhood we had or one that is better. If we really think back, childhood itself is what’s magical. It’s ...

4 Ways To Cultivate Gratitude In Your Kids All Year Long

Nov 8, 2016

Gratitude is the big buzz word this time of year. With all the focus on Thanksgiving and charity projects for the holidays, the blogosphere is flooded with articles about gratitude and giving back. But what happens once the holiday season is over? I don’t know about you, but I hope to raise childre...

4 Sanity Saving Tips For Surviving A Home Renovation With Kids

Nov 1, 2016

This week we’re finishing up a fairly large home renovation and believe me when I say I’ll be so relieved when it’s over. Having major work done can be stressful enough, but throw three cooped up kids into the mix and I’m really testing the limits of my patience. Here are some tips to survive the r...

Not So Fast, Naptime!

Oct 25, 2016

I see you sneaking toward the door, tippy toeing so I don’t hear you. I see you getting farther and farther away, and I don’t like it. I forbid you to go. Sure, it starts with just one day off, but I know how quickly it escalates and you’re going to want more and more time off, until this vacation ...

4 Ways Your Parenting Is Different With Your Last Child

Oct 18, 2016

When I began this parenting journey I was a completely different mother than I am today. Nine years and two more kids later I’ve learned what things to just let go and what things to cling too like your life depends on it. Yesterday we changed my youngest daughter’s convertible crib to a todd...

The Power of “I’m Proud of You!”

Oct 11, 2016

Never underestimate the power of “I’m proud of you!” Sometimes it can be more powerful than “I love you.” I think for the most part our kids know we love them. Sometimes the reminder they need is that we think they are awesome and they’re growing into great people. That’s where, “I’m proud of you” c...

SAHMs You MUST Invest In Yourselves

Oct 4, 2016

Hang on to your socks, I’m about to say something you probably wouldn’t expect from your resident Hudson Valley Parent frugal blogger. Stay At Home Moms you MUST invest in yourselves. “What the what? You want me to spend money? On myself?” “I Deserve” Spending Yup, you heard right...

5 Great Reasons to Give Kids Experience Gifts

Sep 27, 2016

When you grow up with a mom who has a shopping addiction and a mild case of hoarding you develop a skewed perception of stuff. My mom was one of the most generous people I knew. She definitely spoiled us, but at the same time, stuff started to take over our lives. The Problem With Stuff As a mom mys...

6 Tips to Overcome Homework Battles with Your Kids

Sep 20, 2016

I knew from the time my son started preschool that doing homework with him wasn’t going to be easy. He didn’t want to sit still and he didn’t seem to want to learn anything from me. So I had to take a step back and let his teachers do the heavy lifting, but that doesn’t mean the homework hassles we...

As Long As I’m Living My Baby You’ll Be

Sep 13, 2016

The first time I read “Love You Forever” by Robert Munsch to my children I burst into tears. For those of you that don’t know the story, it starts with a new mother who rocks her baby to sleep singing, “I’ll love you forever, I’ll like you for always, as long as ...

Why Seeking Work-Life Balance Is Stressing You Out

Sep 6, 2016

Before you have kids, you might not even be aware of the concept of having work-life balance. You probably work your typical 40 hours a week and save your sleeping in, errands, housework and fun for the weekend. This is all you know. After you have kids you are introduced to this concept of work-li...

9 Ways To Make Going Away On Vacation More Affordable

Aug 29, 2016

It’s been four years since we’ve gone away for vacation. That’s how many years I’ve been a SAHM. Coincidence? Nope. Dropping down to one-income meant making sacrifices and our annual trip to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina was one of the first things to go. We’ve had fun camping every year, but I’m lo...

5 Back To School Money Saving Strategies

Aug 22, 2016

It’s that time of year again, well according to the stores it was that time in June. It’s back to school shopping time. It seems like every year the list of supplies gets longer and longer. It can feel like you’re buying enough pencils and notebooks for the entire school. Add backpacks, clothes, an...

The Toddler Translator

Aug 15, 2016

Toddlerhood is both a wonderful and somewhat frustrating phase as a parent. I look at my sweet little two-year-old and see the sweet curls and baby face and I’m sad this is the last of the littles. Soon enough all my children will be in school and I’ll miss these little hands in mine. But toddlerho...

10 Parenting Worries You Can Kiss Goodbye The Second Time Around

Aug 8, 2016

I still remember the man who approached me at the mall while I was changing my seven-month-old son. He was holding his sweet little newborn daughter with a look in his eyes that was a mixture of exhaustion, nervousness, and desperation. “How long did it take for him to sleep through the night?” he ...

5 Ways Being A SAHM Can Help Your Career

Aug 1, 2016

Yup, you read that right. It might surprise you that being a stay-at-home mom can help you in your career even though you aren’t in one at the moment. I know not all SAHMs want to return to the workforce and that’s perfectly fine. I’ve been a SAHM/WAHM for the past five years, and I never expected ...

Band of Mothers

Jul 24, 2016

A strange phenomenon occurs wherever women gather with their children. There is a bonding that forms immediately over the exchange of labor stories. We can’t seem to get enough details about other women’s labors and we excitedly share our stories. It’s like we all fought in the same war in slightly...

Better Behavior Is Only A Chart Away!

Jul 18, 2016

My Breaking Point Last week, I reached my bad behavior breaking point. My kids were fighting with each other over everything. I told them that they were going to bed early and that was the beginning of one of my son’s EPIC tantrums. My son started refusing to go and the more I insisted, the faster...

What I Will Teach My Biracial Son About Black Lives Matter

Jul 11, 2016

It’s really sickening to turn on the TV or go online and see murder splashed across the headlines. It’s happening all the time. One day it’s a black man shot and killed by cops and another it’s a black man killing cops. You know what the common denominator is? People are being senselessly killed; ta...

4 Fun Alternatives To Summer Homework

Jul 4, 2016

It’s been a crazy, busy, week-and-a-half since my kids started summer break. I just love the summer and all the things we get to do as a family from swimming, boating, BBQs with family, trips to county fairs, and of course vacation. But there’s one thing that is most definitely NOT on m...

7 Things I Wish Someone Had Told Me About Miscarriage

Jun 27, 2016

Why would I want to talk about something that happened ten years ago? Having a miscarriage haunts you. Out of the blue you sometimes get the urge to cry when you look at your children. Even though I’m in the business of writing about my experiences, I also write about things I know people have a ha...

The Saddest Part of “Mom Shaming” Isn’t What You Think

Jun 20, 2016

“Here we go again,” I thought as the headline popped up in my Facebook news-feed. “Country Star Fires Back at Mom Shamers With Viral Instagram Post.” I sucked in my breath as I opened the article and prepared to see some horrific insults hurled at this country star that warranted she take to social ...

5 Realities of Being a Stay-at-Home Mom

Jun 13, 2016

What do you do all day? When are you going back to work? How do you survive on one-income? Do you like being home all day? These are just some of the questions people might have about being a Stay-At-Home Mom. Maybe you’re a working mom who wishes you could stay at home with your kids or maybe you’...

3 Ways To Cope When Your Spouse Stinks At Gift Giving

Jun 6, 2016

I friggin hate the saying “it’s the thought that counts” when it comes to gift giving because what if your thought is “I love you, but gift giving stresses me out.”  Most people will think I’m a terrible wife when I say that I didn’t get my husband a gift for our ten-year anniversary (at least not o...

Date Night Dilemma: When You Don’t Have A Village

May 30, 2016

They say it takes a village to raise kids, but nobody tells you how hard it is when you don’t have much of a village. As far as grandparents go, my kids have my step-father aka Poppy and that’s it. I miss the days when going out to dinner or a movie with my husband meant I simply had to ...

Find Me Where The Wild Things Are

May 23, 2016

Some days you just walk into a place and know with all certainty that you are a hot mess. That was me yesterday, as I rolled up into Aldi with my trio of sugared up wild things. I was rocking my crocs with socks. My baby girl was sporting nothing but a onesie and a chocolate Hitler stash and I just ...

The 5 Stages of Paci Addiction

May 16, 2016

I’ll admit it. I was THAT mom who would give a sideways glance at kids still using a paci past the age of two, but that was before I really understood paci addiction. My first two babies wanted nothing to do with the paci, spitting it out the second I put it in their mouths. After assessing t...

The Last of The Littles

May 9, 2016

If there’s anything a toddler is good at, it’s sniffing out trouble. My daughter has discovered the joy of climbing on chairs and reaching a whole new world of items to touch, throw and spill. She’s also found a new favorite pastime – throwing herself on the floor in a fit of...

6 Things Low Maintenance Moms REALLY Want For Mother’s Day

May 2, 2016

Contrary to one popular commercial, not every kiss begins with Kay. For some of us, every kiss begins with KFC or literally ANY meal we didn’t have to cook ourselves. If you’re lucky enough to be married to a low maintenance woman, then this post is for you so that you don’t waste your time at the j...

When Siblings Are No Longer A Package Deal

Apr 25, 2016

My face fell as I tried to comprehend what my step-father was telling me. My older brother was invited to go swimming at our neighbor’s house. The second I heard the news I went bounding into the house to fetch my swim suit and that’s when a new hard truth of growing up smacked me in the face when ...

6 Reasons to Plan a Kid-Friendly Potluck

Apr 18, 2016

A neighborhood is just the geographic location of your house, until you meet the perfect neighbors that really make it home. Our neighbors the Wall-Carty’s are our family BFFs. We get together at least two days a week to chat and let the kids play. We also share a meal at least once a week. U...

5 Survival Tips When You’re Living For Bedtime

Apr 11, 2016

Have you ever been multi-tasking so much you completely forget what you’re doing? That was my day yesterday. When you work from home, you’re constantly juggling work and family responsibilities. It’s enough to make your head spin. You start just wishing for bedtime so you can just ...

#Mompliment Challenge

Apr 4, 2016

I had an experience recently that made me want to issue a challenge to moms everywhere. I was at Aldi (did I mention once or a hundred times that I LOVE Aldi?) during spring break with all three of my kids. While at the bagging counter a woman next to me said, “I really like how you’re r...

9 Surprising Places You Can Find Your Lost Stuff

Mar 28, 2016

Living with a toddler is a lot like living with a pack rat. My daughter Sydney is completely mesmerized by shiny objects or any objects that don’t belong to her. She brings them from room to room and we spend hours trying to find them later. Even if you don’t have a toddler, chances are...

Making the Most of Spring Break

Mar 21, 2016

Spring break is a great time to get out of the house and explore the beauty of the Hudson Valley. Hannah’s Girl Scout Troop recently visited a farm on the Center for Discovery’s Hurleyville campus. Though it was a bit chilly, the kids had a blast. How Maple Syrup is Made The kids learn...

6 Tips To Hone Your Mama’s Intuition

Mar 14, 2016

I was petrified when the time came to take my first child home from the hospital. I timidly asked the nurse, “Will you show me how to change her before we go?” I had changed a few of my niece’s diapers, but this tiny little helpless being was mine. I looked at her precious little ...

All Aboard The Birthday Party Express!

Mar 7, 2016

I find myself longing for the birthday parties of my youth. They were simple and fun. There only needed to be cake, ice cream and friends to have a great time. One of the birthday parties I loved was at a friend’s house in a tent outside their house. It was a banana split party so every child ...

Slaying The Unicorn of “Easy” Pregnancy

Feb 29, 2016

One of the first things my mother said to me when I got pregnant was how terrific she felt while pregnant and how it would probably be the same for me. Well ladies, let me just slay that mythical unicorn right now and call it what it is, a big steaming pile. My mother had Crohn’s disease so s...

Project Lifesaver Protects Kids Prone To Wandering

Feb 22, 2016

Four-year-old Jamie of Gardiner wears a personal transmitter bracelet as a part of Project Lifesaver. Photo provided by his mother Gabby. Every Parent’s Worst Nightmare For those few minutes I couldn’t breathe, the air wouldn’t move in my lungs, my heart beat wildly. The screams of...

Shoot It! Make Girls Visible In Co-Ed Sports!

Feb 15, 2016

  I sit on the accordion mat, biting my lower lip. I’m fighting the urge to scream out, sometimes unsuccessfully. I’m giving her pep talks from the sidelines during water breaks. No, it’s not a championship game. There’s no reason to be worked up, but something primal t...

8 Sweet Ways To Show Your Kids Love On Valentine’s Day

Feb 8, 2016

One thing I’m grateful for is that my Mom never subscribed to the idea that Valentine’s Day was just for sweethearts. She always made sure my brother and I felt special either by buying us a heart-shaped box of chocolates or stuffed animals or making us homemade cards. Out of all the car...

Save Money On Groceries: 8 Reasons To Shop At Aldi

Feb 1, 2016

If anyone knows the stress that living on one-income can put on a family, it’s me. While trimming our family’s budget, I had to find a way to reduce our grocery spending. One very important way I do this is by shopping at Aldi. If you’ve never heard of it, chances are you have prob...

The Introvert’s Guide To Getting What You Want

Jan 25, 2016

Are you an introvert? If you’re not sure, check out these 24 signs you’re an introvert. Life as an introvert can be isolating if you don’t get out of your head sometimes. I often look at my husband and how he easily navigates social waters and oozes confidence and I wish I could t...

Assemblywoman Aileen Gunther Encourages Girl Scouts To Make Their Mark

Jan 18, 2016

I’m not a big fan of politics. I don’t like watching the debates on TV, unlike my CNN addicted husband. I guess I’m not unlike the majority of people who wonder if their voice even matters to candidates once the elections are over. Despite my misgivings, I was pleasantly surprised ...

6 Surprising Strategies to Pay off Debt

Jan 11, 2016

What does debt have to do with parenting? When you’re a parent you are always aware that your kids are watching, listening and learning from you how to be an adult. Even if you think your kids don’t know you’re up to your eyeballs in debt, chances are they know something is up. The...

4 Phrases To Ban For My Kids’ Sake

Jan 4, 2016

The great irony of motherhood is that the better you strive to be at it, the worse you feel about your abilities. You agonize over every time you lose your temper, every time you say something that makes them feel bad,  and every time you make the wrong decision. The bad highlight reel is non-stop, ...

Why Moms Should Show Each Other Grace

Dec 28, 2015

Why Do The “Mommy Wars” Exist? I’ll tell you why. A simple lack of grace. Because of my faith, I’m VERY familiar with this term. I’ll spare you a dictionary definition, but here’s what it means to me. It means trading in our knee jerk reaction of offense for under...

The Trick To Losing Weight

Dec 21, 2015

Don’t Do As I Do Sometimes parenting doesn’t work the way you think it will. For instance, sometimes you learn that what your parents did just didn’t work and you have to do the opposite for yourself when you grow up. The lesson is still received, just not in the way you expected. ...

Moms, Let’s All Stop Saying “Excuse The Mess”

Dec 14, 2015

Right before I got married my aunt and grandmother (both notorious neat freaks) were coming for a visit. I took the day off of work to scrub the house from top to bottom. Two years later I went down to South Carolina to visit them with my eight month old daughter. My aunt asked if there was any way...

Ten Ways to Give When You’re Broke

Dec 7, 2015

One thing I love about the holidays is the great emphasis on giving to others. I may not love shopping for presents, but I love that it’s on everyone’s heart and mind to help their community and neighbors in need. I also know how sad or frustrating it can feel when you don’t have ...

The 12 Pains of Christmas

Nov 30, 2015

With the passing of Thanksgiving it feels like a sprint into Christmas. All that thankfulness we’re supposed to feel doesn’t even last through dinner anymore as people line up to get the best deals on gifts for Christmas, all before the turkey coma threatens to take us out. Not me thoug...

Over 50 Toys That Made The Naughty or Nice List

Nov 23, 2015

As the holidays quickly approach , I’m feeling nostalgic for toys that don’t completely suck. You know what I’m talking about. You buy a toy for your child hoping to make their holidays super special only for your child to play with it once, it breaks easily, drains batteries quick...

Bye Bye Baby Years

Nov 16, 2015

The End of A Chapter Yesterday I packed the mini-van with a lot of Sydney’s baby gear she no longer uses like her co-sleeper, jumperoo, swing, and walker and I drove it to a local pregnancy support center to donate it. On the outside it may just look like we’re decluttering and we are, ...

The REAL Reason Moms Hate When Siblings Fight

Nov 9, 2015

This morning I reached my last straw. I LOST it on my kids. I yelled at them and told them to go wait for the school bus 10 minutes early because I just had enough of listening to them fight. I cried and told them it’s not supposed to be like this. And it’s not just the listening to it,...

Who Let The Pooch Out?

Nov 2, 2015

Scarier Than A Costume? So as usual while brainstorming ideas for this week’s post, one idea keeps pushing its way to the front of the line at the club even though I tell it to wait its turn. I try to turn my attention to Halloween which will ultimately be over by the time this is published an...

20 Ways To Make Ends Meet When You’re Scraping By – Part 2

Oct 26, 2015

We’ve all been there, living on Ramen and a prayer until pay day. Broke is a place we’ve all been, so don’t be ashamed, just keep moving forward and hopefully broke will be a place you’re just passing through, instead of where you put down roots. Last week, I talked about ten...

20 Ways To Make Ends Meet When You’re Scrapping By – Part 2

Oct 26, 2015

We’ve all been there, living on Ramen and a prayer until pay day. Broke is a place we’ve all been, so don’t be ashamed, just keep moving forward and hopefully broke will be a place you’re just passing through, instead of where you put down roots. Last week, I talked about ten...

20 Ways To Make Ends Meet When You’re Scraping By – Part 1

Oct 19, 2015

I’m eagerly counting down the months till March. Like most people, I live for that fantastic day when we get our tax refund. Even though we changed my husband’s withholding on his paycheck when I first started staying home to get more money per check, we still get a decent refund each ye...

4 Reasons I’m COMPLETELY Un-Pinterested

Oct 12, 2015

My friend Marissa and I have this joke about how we’ve joined the secret society of the Un-Pinterested. She posts pictures of Pinterest crafts or cute deserts dressed up as animals or decorations and we say, “Let’s pretend we did this and just eat the cookies instead.” We als...

Becoming A Scout For Life

Oct 5, 2015

When I was a little girl, my mom worked full-time and she didn’t always have time to attend my extracurricular activities, which is why it meant that much more to me that she was my Girl Scout troop leader. We gathered once a week at our town firehouse and recited the Girl Scout promise, sang ...

The Face Of Hunger Isn’t What You Think

Sep 28, 2015

I sit at my table profoundly humbled and heartbroken. We tell ourselves that we aren’t rich, but that’s a lie. It’s a first world problem to always be told by the media that we aren’t rich because we are bombarded with images of the super rich. Yet, in a global context, most ...

NEVER Go Full Pancakes – 4 Tips To Survive Dining Out With The Kids

Sep 21, 2015

Darla Neugebauer, owner of Marcy’s Diner in Portland, Maine made headlines after yelling at a two-year-old who was crying in her establishment. Marcy’s Diner in Main became famous in July of this year, not for its amazing food, but for its owner who unapologetically yelled at a two-year-old fo...

4 Pitfalls Of Putting Your Marriage On Autopilot

Sep 21, 2015

When Your Love Tank Is Low This morning started with a fight about money, but to be fair it started brewing yesterday. It’s probably the thing my husband and I fight most about, though to be perfectly honest we don’t fight all that often. I think there are resentments, fears and misunde...

4 Pitfalls Of Putting Your Marriage On Autopiolot

Sep 21, 2015

When Your Love Tank Is Low This morning started with a fight about money, but to be fair it started brewing yesterday. It’s probably the thing my husband and I fight most about, though to be perfectly honest we don’t fight all that often. I think there are resentments, fears and misunde...

Baby Arm: 15 Ways To Build Strong Bicepts By Juggling A Baby And EVERYTHING Else

Sep 14, 2015

While having a conversation with a friend this week we had a random discussion about “baby arm.” Baby arm is when moms have one arm that is clearly stronger from constantly holding a baby/toddler. It launched a mini-discussion about all the things I had no idea I could do one-handed befo...

Baby Arm: 15 Ways To Build Strong Biceps By Juggling A Baby And EVERYTHING Else

Sep 14, 2015

While having a conversation with a friend this week we had a random discussion about “baby arm.” Baby arm is when moms have one arm that is clearly stronger from constantly holding a baby/toddler. It launched a mini-discussion about all the things I had no idea I could do one-handed befo...

WAHM – When Work And Motherhood Collide

Sep 7, 2015

From SAHM To WAHM If you’ve ever breastfed your baby while taking a work call or locked yourself in your bedroom and put on a movie for the kids in order to get some work done, you’re probably a Work At Home Mom (WAHM). Until recently, I thought of myself as a Stay At Home Mom. Then it ...

Go Ahead, Ask Me About My Children’s Race

Aug 31, 2015

Who’s Your Daddy? For the purposes of this blog post I’m going to call my husband out on his super secret addiction to the Maury Show. If he’s ever home from work during the week, he simply can’t help but tune in to hear Maury say, “You ARE the Father!” or “...

10 Camping Sanity Savers

Aug 24, 2015

Some families prefer to find a luxury hotel and enjoy being pampered while on vacation. Well, my family likes to go camping. The difference is while others come home from vacation and think about all the luxury they’ll be missing, we come home grateful for all the luxuries we have. You know, l...

4 Things I Want The World To Know About My Sensitive Child

Aug 17, 2015

Before my children were born, I prayed that they would have my husband’s temperament. He’s so easy going that if you didn’t REALLY know him you might think that nothing gets to him. You remember your mother’s warning, “Just wait, you’ll have a child just like you...

Momfession: It’s NOT “Baby Weight”

Aug 10, 2015

There are two things you NEVER ask a woman – her age and her weight. Everyone knows this. Why? Because more than likely they are the things she’s most sensitve about. So I just want to start by saying that the following is MY story. It is in NO way an attempt to make any other woman fee...

Momfession: My Minivan Is My Purse

Aug 3, 2015

“Oh great,” I scoff when my husband tells me he needs to borrow my minivan to carpool down to the Bronx for a fishing trip. I silently say a prayer that all three car seats will fit in the back of his car so that I do not in fact have to kill him for trapping me at home on a beautiful S...

You’re Done Now RIGHT???

Jul 27, 2015

It seems like you hit your twenties, get married and then people start asking you when you’re going to start a family. Then you have your first child and people lavish you with attention. In fact, the parade of people coming to visit your first-born in the hospital seems endless and overwhelmi...

What You’re Already Doing Right – Part 2

Jul 20, 2015

Last week I talked about my hatred of parenting articles that are intent on pointing out the many ways our parenting skills fall short. Nobody is perfect and caring for one or more children doesn’t change that. But I’m here to tell you that perfection is not necessary to be a good parent...

What You’re Already Doing Right – Part 1

Jul 13, 2015

I’ve had this post in my heart for some time now. I, like you, probably ready a lot of parenting articles online. I don’t know about you, but I’m getting pretty darn sick of articles like 10 Things You Should Never Say To Your Kids. I read things like this and I think, what a joke....

You’re Trippin – I Gotta Pack What?

Jul 6, 2015

I can tell it’s summertime by the sheer volume of kid stuff residing in my minivan. This week my husband had off from work so we had a busy week filled with day trips. There was a visit to Jellystone Campground in Woodridge on Monday, a visit to Circleville park on Wednesday, Thursday we visit...

Are You Suffering From Single Income Syndrome?

Jun 29, 2015

I found myself yelling at my husband the other day over an $8 purchase of clothing from the Salvation Army. I know what you’re thinking, crazy, right? You’re right it was a bit crazy, till I realized what was really going on with me. I was suffering from a brutal case of Single Income Sy...

A Father’s Day Tribute To The Dads That Didn’t Have To Be

Jun 21, 2015

There are plenty of fantastic dads out there. My husband is one. My father George was another. I’ve known dads who’ve have fatherhood thrust upon them at a young age and yet have handled it with grace and maturity beyond their years, but this Father’s Day I want to say a big THANK ...

Taking Care of Yourself IS Taking Care of Your Family

Jun 15, 2015

Parents Who Didn’t Take Care Of Themselves I am the product of two loving parents who unfortunately took better care of me than they did of themselves. My father was an amazing man whose pride poured out for me, but he got sober too late in his life . He died of cirrhosis of the liver after ye...

The Low Maintenance Gal’s Nightmare: Family Picture Day

Jun 8, 2015

The Beauty Blind Leading The Way It started at 5 am. That’s when my husband woke up and informed me he was going fishing….ON FAMILY PICTURE DAY. “I’ll be back in plenty of time,” he says. My husband knows he only needs to shower and put some clothes on and he’ll ...

Charlie, Charlie – Bringing The Boogeyman Into School

Jun 1, 2015

The Simple To Make Ouija Board When I was a kid I played the Ouija board “game” that supposedly contacted spirits to answer questions about your life. I played it at a friend’s house when I was in Middle School. Now the kids have found a new “game” to play called Char...

What Does It REALLY Mean To Be “Kid Friendly?”

May 25, 2015

To Stay Or To Go? Have you ever walked into a place or event expecting it to be “kid friendly” and sadly it was not? Then you have to make the choice. Do you stay and attempt to make your children conform to the environment or do you make a mad dash for the exit before anyone notices yo...

Opposites Attract: Parenting Edition

May 18, 2015

So I just read this post on Babble, “Can You Stay Friends With Someone Who Has A Wildly Different Parenting Style?” In it, the writer expresses exasperation with her old friend who is a “helicopter parent” because she is a “free range parent.” She wonders aloud, a...

When To Listen To Other Parents’ Advice

May 11, 2015

The Girl Without A Voice I was the girl in elementary school who had to be evaluated by a speech therapist. There was nothing wrong with my speech except for the fact that I didn’t know if anyone cared to hear it. Even through high school I wasn’t one to speak up and share in class beca...

4 Strategies To Stay Sane During Sleep Training

May 4, 2015

Guess Who Won The Sleep Lottery? This Girl. You know that feeling when you wake with a start, positive you overslept and your alarm didn’t go off? That’s what it’s like the first day you realize you actually slept straight through the night since your baby was born. It takes a min...

Sayonara Skinny Jeans

Apr 27, 2015

Archeological Dig Of A Woman’s Closet Cleaning out a person’s closet is like going on an archeological dig. You can find out what that person valued, what they did, what they wore, and what they liked, but there is a reason why most of us rarely take the time to thoroughly clean out our...

3 Things My Kids Will Be Better Off Paying For Themselves

Apr 20, 2015

I know we’re living in a day and age where parents think they need to provide everything for their kids. Growing up, my parents couldn’t always afford to provide me with everything, but what I gained was a better appreciation for the things I worked for. Here are the top three things I&#...

Where The Heart Is – 3 Teachable Moments From A Home Renovation

Apr 13, 2015

My kids celebrating the completion of our basement renovation by dancing in their pajamas. You’d think this was going to be their new room instead of ours. Where The Heart Is They say home is where the heart is, but I think adults tend to forget this. Children know it though. My daughter certa...

There is No “ME” In MOMMY

Apr 6, 2015

Whack A Mole I’m having one of those “MOMMY” days, you know just like EVERY other day of my life. I’m just scarfing down a cereal bar at 10:30 in the morning after getting up, taking care of the kids, bathing the baby after a colossal poop, and praying for an end to spring b...

Couponing For A Cause

Mar 30, 2015

I’ve gone from ok couponer (using 6-10 coupons per trip) to moderately extreme couponer (using 18-25 per trip). Beyond learning how to provide for my family, I’ve learned that giving back doesn’t have to cost you a thing. A Spiderweb of “ME” Someone once told me that bl...

How Does She Do It: 5 Things We Could Learn From A Mom Of 6

Mar 23, 2015

Last week, I was struck by a video my former college roommate posted on Facebook. It was her three-year-old daughter doing laundry. I was awestruck. It wouldn’t even occur to me to teach my kids to do chores like laundry at this young age. Here I was thinking I was doing good having just rece...

5 Strategies To Stop Feeding The Trash

Mar 16, 2015

As my family is FINALLY embarking on some much needed renovations to our home giving us a needed extra bedroom, I’m feeling stressed about money. When I stress I go into hyper save mode. I’ve gone from ok couponer to moderately extreme (more in a later post) and I’ve resolved to s...

Top 20 Hilarious Thoughts From A Human Bottle a.k.a. Nursing Mom

Mar 9, 2015

Don’t worry people. It’s a baby under here, not a bomb. As happens to me a lot I was going to write about something else this week until I saw a friend’s post on Facebook about how she was about to nurse her last baby for the last time. It got me thinking about this time in our liv...

The Question All Stay At Home Moms Dread

Mar 2, 2015

Dorothy We’re Not In Kansas Anymore First let me start by saying that I never ever expected to be a Stay At Home Mom. As I type this my baby girl is snuggled in the cook of my arms FINALLY napping. I expected to work full time as my mother did. I expected that I’d put my children in day...

4 Reasons Why Charity Should Begin At Home

Feb 23, 2015

For those of you with children too young for school, let me give you a brief glimpse of what you’re in for. It seems like at least twice a month my kids come home with some fundraiser. I’m not sure if I’m the only one that feels this way, but school fundraisers are like the […...

Love Is Better Than Money In The Bank

Feb 16, 2015

With the recent passing of Valentine’s Day I’m reminded of the Valentine’s Day card my mother made for me when I was eight. It was a simple cut out heart with pages inside filled with her heartfelt words about how much she loved me and how she was so thankful that God gave her a da...

Do You Date Your Mate?

Feb 9, 2015

Not Designed For Dating Valentine’s Day is coming up and it got me wondering, “Do you date your mate?” My husband and I had a totally random conversation the other day in which we both agreed that it was for the best that we met each other young (we were 18/19 year-old freshmen in ...

The Secret Lives Of Superhero Spouses: A Tribute To Primary Caregivers

Feb 2, 2015

More than once recently I have found myself wondering if superheroes have families and if so what becomes of their spouses? Are they rocking themselves in a corner somewhere on the verge of a nervous breakdown or are they twirling their wedding bands, wondering how they got themselves into this? I w...

Please Sleep Baby: 4 Truths From The Trenches

Jan 26, 2015

There are few questions parents of babies want answered as much as – “When will my baby sleep through the night?” When my son was about six months old a man at the mall approached me with desperation in his eyes and asked- “Does he sleep through the night?” I could tell...

Not So Desperate Housewives: 3 Ways Staying Home Takes The Pressure Off

Jan 19, 2015

I was thinking about one of my former favorite TV shows, Desperate Housewives the other day and despite all the crazy antics that went on in the show, I was struggling to come up with some good reason for the name. I have felt many moments of desperation as a mom, but almost all of them […]

3 Hardcore Parenting Lessons From Our Parents

Jan 12, 2015

My House, My Rules Back before there were lengthy discussions about bottle vs. breast or what was “good parenting” and what was “bad parenting” was my parents’ hardcore parenting style. No sugar coating or being your child’s friend. My parents were great, but by t...

3 New Year’s Resolution Fixes: Vow This Not That

Jan 5, 2015

Women’s Magazines – Eat This Not That Since we’re less than a week into 2015, I’ve been thinking about why so many New Year’s resolutions fail. It’s not because we set the bar too high. But if we could simply “resolve” to lose 10 pounds we would have l...

What We Could All Learn About Race From A Bi-Racial Child

Dec 27, 2014

A Black And White World We’re living in a powder keg of racial tension right now and it often makes me wonder how my children fit into a world that is determined to see black and white without acknowledging shades of gray (or brown). When I first started dating my husband at the age of […...

4 Reasons I De-Emphasize Santa

Dec 22, 2014

A Brief Reintroduction You may have noticed that I’m no longer writing under the name Discount Diva because I decided to branch out and talk about parenting issues. I went with The No Drama Mama because that’s how I like my life; simple with the only beautiful chaos being caused by my th...