Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Simple. Pleasures.

Today we went blueberry picking.

And it was one of the best mornings we've had all summer.

It didn't last long (2-year twin attention spans = um, not much), maybe a couple hours, but it was wonderful. And simple.

No flashing lights and loud sounds, just a big field, hundreds of bursting-with-berries bushes and a couple of buckets.


We ate way more than we picked; we got dirty and wet . I loved hearing S & J say, "Blueberries! Blueberries! Mama, blueberries!" each time they spied a nearly-black blue berry busting with juice, as if it was the first one they saw all morning.

I am thankful that my kiddos love nature and being outdoors and exploring and experiencing new things.

I am thankful that I get to see the world anew through their awesome lens.

Sunday, July 27, 2008


It’s not the same. It’s not even close.

People that have kiddos that are close in age sometimes want to commiserate with me about the trials and tribulations of having twins.

"You and I have a similar situation," they say.

These people are good people and good moms and very well-intentioned.

But it’s not the same.

Not even close.

And mostly because of one word:


Danger Dad and I may not have more kids. We’d very much like to but it may not happen. We’re “if-the-universe/God-wants-it-to-be-then-it-will-be” kind of folks so another baby will be welcomed but not counted on. I am healthy and fit but (cue the scary music: “dumm, dumm, dummmmm”)...

I’m also 40.

(Do you hear the 1980's-Jamie Curtis-in-Halloween-style scream?!? EEEEEEEK!)

That means that I may not have a chance for a “do-over.”

As Pamela Prindle so aptly puts it:
With each child going through the same stage and phase simultaneously, there's no opportunity to learn from past experience.

In short, parents of multiples don't have the advantage of hindsight.

This is upsetting to me. Many even more than the possibility of not adding to our already-awesome family.

I would like some do-overs. I'm so scared of making mistakes. And I know that I make them.

SCORES of 'em.

I try to learn from my mistakes now but wonder if it's too late. Can we escape scaring our children with our own ignorance?

For now I will love, discipline and teach with "do-over" always top of mind. Because I may not have a second chance.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Teach your children well

Tomatoes do not come from Wal-Mart.

Neither do peaches, cucumbers, honey, eggs or cheese.

Or milk.

These are the lessons I’m trying to teach my kiddos.

These things come from the earth. They are grown, nurtured and cultivated by people. Important stuff to know, I think.

Late last week I took S & J to our little, down-home and absolutely charming Farmer’s Market. It’s held weekly in the shared parking lot of the library and public health department. Our county has a cool plan for low-income family and WIC coupon holders. They can “spend” their WIC vouchers buying healthy veggies, fruit and honey at the farmer’s market. Fabulous.

In March the kiddos and I got some organic tomato and jalapeno pepper seeds. S & J watched as I planted the seeds in warm peat and placed them in the middle of the sunny kitchen table. Together we watered them every day until a tiny green head popped out of the dirt to say hello.

We’re growing our food,” I told them. “We need to care for these seeds so they will provide us with yummy eats."

A month or so later we transplanted the seedlings into cups, then finally into large colorful pots (actually, funky garbage cans from Ikea) on our back deck. They are thriving in the Georgia heat and sun and its fun to check on them everyday and dream of the luscious tomato sandwiches and tasty roasted peppers to come. The kiddos love to touch the fruit and poke and wiggle their fingers in the dirt.

I love that.

We also planted some sunflower seeds in the front flower beds. We oooh and aaah over their big, colorful heads peeking over the porch rail.

Most days I'm at a loss at what to teach my children. Sure, I've got the basics covered: be kind, be thankful, nuture others and love, love, love..

I think that those "basics" apply to food too.

I'll let you know when our tomatoes are sandwich-ready.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Born to be Wild

They told me they were riding motorcycles.

I asked if they needed helmets.

They said yes.

I guess we can add another use for the lowly but appreciated dish towel.

Monday, July 14, 2008

I'm sick of tired

I want to believe that one day I will be fully rested.

I want to believe that one day I will sleep until I wake up, not sleep until I am woken up. (Mommy, mommy, MOMMY! All done, all done, ALL DONE!)

I want to believe that my current State of Exhaustion will only make me stronger.

I love being a full-time mom. But the truth is that I’m tired. All the time. Pre-kiddos I was a world-class night-owl-social-whirligig. I loved the color, nightlife, music, noise, art of being out and about at openings and concerts and such. I stayed out late and slept in late. I laugh at that now. HA. (yawn.)

This a.m. Danger Dad took the kids to the pool so that I could work on a recently assigned article for the paper. The house is empty and quiet and all I want to do it curl up in my beautiful, comfy, down-comforter-in-the-summer-cozy bed and sleeeeep. But I can’t. And I wouldn’t even if I could. It would be too much of a tease. I would lay there and think about all the stuff I should be doing. The above-mentioned article, laundry, breakfast clean-up, make beds, water plants, lunch prep, laundry, cultivating more freelance work, multiples club management, laundry…

People tell me that I do too much and that I should slow down. I don’t know what that means. My level of activity seems normal to me. I would be bored if it were any other way. But maybe I would be rested? Bored and rested vs. active and tired. Those are my choices? Crap.

I also hear that I (all moms, really) need to find balance. WTF? I want to scream at those people, “People, try to find balance when two fabulous but very very very needy toddler munchkins are wanting attention and food and READ THIS!, ART NOW MOMMY! and PLAY BALL! and LET’S GO POOL !” Pair that with the fact that I need to take as much freelance work as possible now because the economy is in the absolute shitter and it’s helpful if I can at least cover some of the groceries... And gas. Add in that I co-founded a parents of multiples club last year and although it’s wildly successful with at least 3 new paid families each week and a spankin’ new board it still needs some care and feeding so I took on a VP position this year. While we’re at it we can throw in that I’m starting a new business so that I can finally start building the empire. (I love my freelance work but sometimes I want to be the boss, make sense?) And I regularly bring meals to all the new moms in my Stepford suburb. And I help friends paint their new 4th grade classroom because they need me and I love them. And I make all of our food fresh because I love my family more than anything and I want to make sure that their bods and minds are growing in the best possible way.

O.k., maybe I am too busy.

But that’s who I am. And these days being tired is who I am too.

So I suppose I’m choosing active and tired over rested and bored.

Must run. I've gots stuff to do...

Friday, July 11, 2008

Read My Chest

One day not so long ago I realized that I'd somehow gotten frumpy.

Me, of red patent leather stilettos and so many cool shoes I can't count 'em all.. Me, wearer of 1950's vintage swimsuits, just because I can... Me, the one with the different hairstyle every week… Me, slick-suited PR maven... Me, of the thousand different shades of red lipstick…

What the hell happened?

My uniform morphed from interesting and unique to Old Navy couture. This is a natural progression, right? Skinny jeans give way to Mommy jeans? Ack. Not me. And yet, I had somehow because that mom.

But I was saved. Well, sort of.

My friend and neighbor writes an awesomely cool column and gave me one of her swag tees. I wore it proudly in my suburban ‘hood. I got smiles. And comments. And ATTENTION. Nice. That hadn’t happened in months. At least not since the kiddos were born. (Twins are a magnet for folks and the mom is quickly invisible. I’m not jealous of S and J. But I do miss being visible to the naked eye.)

So I decided to create a few tees of my own.

And now I’m visible again.

These will soon be for sale on Etsy. I hope they can help bring more folks into focus. And have fun while they’re doing it.

Some other tee messages include (yeah, they're TM'ed):
- This mommy needs a wife
- You can’t even imagine what I do all day
- Silence is golden, duct tape is silver

And for twin moms:
- Free knuckle sandwich to the fool that says “Double Trouble”
- Twins run in my family (yeah, right)
- Twin moms rock twice as hard
- Yes, they were naturally conceived Yes, that’s the rudest question in the world

And if you're pregger with twins:
- Twins: Buy one, get one free
- Fertile²
- Their conception is none of your business.

Whaddya think? "Dumb, dumb, dumb?" Or "Go for it, lady! Ride that Message T-shirt trend!"

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Big. Quiet. News.

I'm in a bit of a sticky situation.

I'm officially embarking on one of my business ideas and I can't wait to tell you about it.

Should I?

I mean, it's an awesome idea, fills a giant, gaping niche and wholly original but not yet ready to be fired out of a cannon for the whole world to enjoy.

And I just don't want someone to beat me to the punch.

I'm not a procrastinator and I don't plan on sitting on this super-terrific idea forever but let's face it: I've got a lot of irons in the fire these days. Mostly red-hot irons named J and S.

Not to mention the care and feeding of Danger Dad.

So, I will embark (big-time creative meeting tonight, setting launch timeline and goals and such) and tell you what I can.

When I can.

And please, root me on. I will trumpet the good news from the rafters in due time.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Quiche Me

My other passion: FOOD. This is my recipe for Crustless "Kid" Quiche. It's the one that was featured in the Atlanta-Journal Constitution last September in the article about homemade baby food and healthy eating for young kiddos.

It's ultra-yummy, ultra-easy and a great way to sneak veggies into kiddos.



8 servings
Hands on: 15 minutes

Total time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

5 eggs

3/4 cup whole milk

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon mustard powder

1 cup grated organic cheese, such as cheddar or mozzarella

1 cup steamed veggies, such as broccoli, peas, corn, carrots or spinach

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a bowl, mix together eggs, milk, flour and mustard powder. Spray a round 9-inch cake pan with nonstick spray. Distribute cheese evenly on bottom of pan. Top with layer of veggies. Pour egg mixture on top. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes. When cool, cut into eight wedges and store in refrigerator. Serve cold or heated. Cut into cubes, so toddlers can feed themselves. Discard any leftovers after 3 days.

Per serving: 131 calories (percent of calories from fat, 61), 9 grams protein, 4 grams carbohydrates, trace fiber, 9 grams fat (4 grams saturated), 150 milligrams cholesterol, 145 milligrams sodium.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Bye-Bye Bag

I retired the diaper bag yesterday.

Not because my kiddos are finally potty-trained. Lawdy no. We’re still very Diaperrific around here. I retired it because I think it’s TIME. It’s TIME for me to carry a real handbag. Something without 20 pockets or an insulated area for a bottle.

For going on 2.5 years I’ve been totin’ around a small, black, rip-stop canvas/nylon/NASA material-type Lands End “Little Tripper” diaper bag. (Yeah, LANDS END. Snicker away, people…) Everyone told me that it was too small and that it would never hold ALL THE STUFF I was going to need for twins. They were wrong. It rose beautifully to its Tour of Duty. Turns out I didn’t need much. Two diapers, some wipes and, well, not much else. Not once did I experience a super pooper blow-out where I’d need of a change of clothes for one of the kiddos. Not once did I need more than one diaper during an outing. Not once. It’s been perfect.

Unfortunately, now I think experiencing the Seven Stages of Grief:

Shock or Disbelief – am I really ready to retire this bag?

Denial – there’s noooo way my kiddos are old enough for me to retire this bag.

Bargaining – maybe I can still use it? All those pockets… Very, very useful…

Guilt – it’s been so good to me.. holding those diapers and all… it’s still in great shape…

Anger – I don’t need this stinkin’ bag. It’s a DIAPER BAG. Must. Get. Rid. Of. It.

Depression – There’ll never be another bag that truly fits all my needs. I’m doomed to wander around Marshall’s forever trying to find the perfect bag… Crud…

Acceptance and Hope – I can do this. I can move beyond the diaper bag.

So, because it’s TIME, I traded it out for a fun, bright red purse with a shiny patent leather strap. Super sassy. The new model. Since I hit a big age milestone recently I’ve been thinking a lot about the new model. Just because something is a little worn out although still very useful do you get rid of it or banish it to the back of the closet? Not always. But sometimes you have to move on and sometimes the newer model helps you do that.

I think I’ll keep the Little Tripper around. I just can’t throw it out. It may come in handy again some day soon.