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This Sunday, all across the United States, mothers will be celebrated for their love, dedication, care and commitment to their children. This holiday dates back to ancient Greece honoring the great mother of gods and has since taken root in several religious and civil celebrations throughout the world.
Some will celebrate Mother’s Day with gifts, a special outing, preparing a meal for mom or going to her favorite restaurant. My mom still has the myriad of Mother’s Day cards my sister and I made for her throughout the years. She loves to look through them and tell stories of us when we were little – like the time we brought her breakfast in bed and managed to dump it on the sheets. Nothing like starting your special day doing laundry! Whether it’s breakfast in bed or a celebration at a bed and breakfast, the ways to pamper mom are endless.
Do you have a favorite Mother’s Day memory or a special Mother’s Day request? If so , please share it with us. And if your special wish is to be pampered in a spa, make sure a special someone enters you in our Mother’s Day contest.
Are you a busy mom with barely any time -if any- to get ready in the morning? You can still have a “finished” look on the go and new York City’s makeup artist Carmindy is ready to help with some easy tips from her new book, Crazy Busy Beautiful: Beauty Secrets for Getting Gorgeous Fast. A few easy tips that we liked:
- In a pinch, you can use mascara as eyeliner. Pick up a little color from the mascara wand with a cotton swab and smudge it into the lashline.
- When applied with a clean dried-out mascara brush, regular hair gel can work as brow gel.
- For a quick hint of glow-to-go, bland a dab of clear lip gloss on the top of the cheekbones.
Whether you have time to “prime yourself” or not, we are know you are a beautiful mom inside and out!
What quick “get ready” tips do you have?
It’s May and we are celebrating Motherhood in a special way. For our 5 Mom Mondays this month you will be hearing from moms who come from very different backgrounds and experiences, but who share a deep love for being a mom. We kick off our Month of Moms with Johanna from And Baby Makes Three (Plus Pooch)
As a first-time mom what were some of your fears of becoming a mom?
I worried that I’d never be able to do it all. I was worried that I wouldn’t be good enough; that I wouldn’t have enough to offer or to teach my daughter. I worried that I would work too much and spend too little time with the baby and she’d resent me. Or that I’d work too little and spend too much time with her and get fired. I worried that I would never sleep again, that I would never, ever be caught up on laundry, and that the days of my husband and I sitting alone to enjoy a bottle of wine would be as frequent as a buy one/get one sale at Bloomingdales. And I worried that I’d have to buy all new clothes because I didn’t think there was a chance in the world that my behind was ever going to fit into my skinny jeans again.
What has been your biggest surprise about motherhood?
That none of the stuff I feared mattered. I was surprised to find out that as long as I did the best at what I knew, it was enough for my daughter. After all, she was new at this whole thing too. Everyone talked about the instant connection that I would feel after the baby was born, but nothing prepared me for how deeply into my bones and through my blood I would feel that love. I was totally shocked that I didn’t always totally mind when Marin woke me up at 2am. I was surprised by how unbothered I was by her dirty diapers, her runny nose, her spit up… And I was surprised by how content I was to just sit with my daughter in silence, not necessarily doing anything at all. And yes, I was surprised when I fit back into those jeans. In fact, I did a dance and ran around singing, “My jeans fit! My jeans fit!” and I’m not embarrassed to admit that.
What is your biggest challenge?
Balance. That work/life/family/love/friends/dog walking balance has been really hard for me. I’m not sure I will ever really figure this out. Does anyone?
If you could receive ‘expert advice” on one aspect of parenting, what would it be?
How to survive a meltdown in the middle of the grocery store… the kind where your child just plops right down on the floor and wails. Yeah, I’m there.
Where do you see yourself in 25 years?
I just did the math and am over the fact that I will someday be as old as my mother-in-law… but I’m not yet over the shock that Marin will someday be 26! Isn’t she going to be my sweet, innocent baby girl forever? I suppose if forced to face that reality, in 25 years I’d love to be relaxing, traveling, writing, and thinking about how to gently persuade Marin to make my husband and me, grandparents.
Now for a quick glance into Johanna’s life.
What is one thing always in your fridge? Whole milk and my grandparent’s homemade pickles!
What is your one guilty pleasure? Jelly bellies. I like to eat them in amounts too embarrassing to disclose.
If you had a free day to yourself, how would you spend it? At the park with Marin in the morning, at the spa with a girlfriend in the afternoon, a quiet dinner with my husband that evening… all topped off with a good book in a bubble bath. Ahhhh…perfection!
If someone were going to write a book on your life, what would they title it? I had the idea about a year ago to write a book titled Blood, Sweat and Breastmilk, based on my theory that breastmilk has unparalleled value to a breastfeeding mother. And about the equal parts love and sweat equity that a mother pours into her children. I think that pretty fairly represents my life at this moment.
Thank you Johanna. We really enjoy your great outlook and sense of humor. If any of our “seasoned moms” have figured out the “balance of life” part of motherhood, chime in!
The New York Times is looking to capture a global moment in time this Sunday. The idea is to take a photo of wherever you are at on Sunday, May 2, at 15:00 hours (U.T.C.). This invite is open to expert photographers and amateurs. You only get to submit one photo so the NY Times encourages you to put thought behind the picture. You are asked to list your location and subject and a short caption. You will then be able to see a world-wide mosaic of what humanity was doing at that same moment in time. You can arrange the photos by country or topic as well as by how readers ranked them.
We think this is a fun activity to do as a family. You can teach your children about different parts of the world as you look at the global mosaic. Here at Kolcraft we will be joining in the “awe” of being part of a global mosaic. Feel free to post your moment in time in our Magical Moments section so your Kolcraft family can share your moment in time.
Will you be participating in the Global Mosaic?
Last Thursday was “bring your kids to work” day. We had quite a few Kolcraft kids at our office learning about what their parents do all day at work. They also gave us their thoughts on their parents’ jobs and celebrated a pizza party with us. We wanted to share a few pictures with you of our fun day.
We are sure you are a Marvelous Mom and we want to celebrate you! To honor Marvelous Moms, Kolcraft is hosting a Marvelous Moms contest where you can win a $150.00 spa pamper package. The contest is easy to enter:
- Put a photo of a Marvelous Mom on our Facebook wall along with a paragraph or two explaining why she is a marvelous mom
- Judges will pick the finalists from the entries and you will get to vote on which finalist you think should win.
- While you cannot nominate yourself, tell your kids, friends, hubby, significant other, etc. so they can nominate you because we know you are a marvelous mom just waiting for a spa day!
Join the fun because you deserve to be pampered! Complete details are on our Facebook Mother’s Day Tab
Today’s Tip Tuesday talks about your toddler. (Yes, we did want to see how many t’s we could put in that sentence! ) It’s no secret that toddler’s can be fussy eaters. At times meals can turn into “food wars” if your toddler won’t eat. All sorts of tactics are used from bribing them to desperate pleas to eat. One way to make your toddler’s mealtime fun is to use a cookie cutter to make his food into fun shapes. Your toddler will look forward to see what surpise shapes will be on his plate!
What creative ways have you helped a fussy toddler eat his food?
Today we have the opportunity to talk with Beth from Happily Domestic. Beth is a SAHM to 4 beautiful children ages 9 years old to 5 months. If that didn’t keep her busy enough she also is their home-school teacher. We were excited to have a few moments to catch up with her.
The name of your blog, Happily Domestic, seems to say it all for you. What is your favorite part of being a SAHM?
First of all I want to say that I feel absolutely honored and blessed to be able to stay at home with my children. My husband and I decided from the start of our marriage to live off one income. We did this so that it would not be a shock to us when we started our family. It hasn’t always been easy financially, but worth every sacrifice. I have never missed hearing any of my children’s first words, I was by their sides as they took their first steps, and have had the privilege of teaching both my older children to read. This is my favorite part about being a stay at home mom.
How are you able to keep a balance in your life with four children, homeschooling and writing a blog?
Good question. I am still trying to find the perfect balance. It is a challenge keeping up with it all. My days are very busy from early morning until late at night. One thing I have been working on is making sure I am not caught up in time wasters. I do not watch television, I do not have a cell phone (I do not text anyone), I keep my phone calls brief and have recently set my computer so that I can only go online in the evening. These things help tremendously at keeping me focused on the everyday tasks that need to be accomplished.
You have great tips on saving money. What would you say is the most important thing for a family to keep in mind so they can save money?
I think that American families in general are caught in a trend that they need to have it all to be successful. We are continually told that we need the big house, the luxury cars, etc. All the while we are becoming increasingly more in debt. This is not a successful lifestyle. We all need to be good stewards of what we are given and learn to live within our means. We cannot rely on our jobs to always provide. If the goal is to live debt free (including your home mortgage) then saving money will come easy to you. After all, we owe it to our children to leave them with more than just debt when we die.
What has been your “success tip” for raising children?
I was raised in a broken home. My parents divorced when I was 6 and I was shuffled back and forth between Colorado and California until I was 18. I experienced a great deal of stress growing up. I was rejected by my own mother and mentally abused by her when I had to stay with her. I always knew in my heart that when I had children of my own that I would do everything in my power to be a great mom for them. I never want a day to go by that I take my children for granted. My success tip for raising children is to realize that your little babies will one day be grown adults. Love on them, spend time with them, let them know that they are special. I see so many parents who seem put out by their children and it is sad. We have only a few short years with them. We need to learn to cherish each and every day.
What is the one thing you know now after parenting 4 children that you wish you knew at the start of your parenting journey?
I wish I knew how fast they grow up. Little old ladies always use to tell me, “enjoy them…they grow up fast!” I would laugh and go on. Wow! It goes FAST. I wish I had spent less time stressing and more time enjoying my little ones. Even on those days when they were marking the walls with crayons or tearing the batting out of our couch.
Now for a quick glance into Beth’s life.
What is the book currently by your bedside? There is no book, just an adorable little baby boy sweetly sleeping in his bassinet.
What’s the one baby-care product you couldn’t live without? This is a hard one. There are so many baby products I feel I could not live without. For instance…my nursing cover (I am not about to start lifting my shirt in public), my baby monitor (I would worry excessively if I could not hear my baby while he is taking his naps), my Itzbeen timer (My poor baby would probably be nursed only 3 times a day if I didn’t have this handy timer to remind me when I last fed him)…but hands down I could not live without a stroller! How else could I go anywhere with having two little ones 2 and under???
If you had a free day to do anything you wanted, what would you do? A whole day to myself? Wow! This may seem simple, but I would love to go to lunch downtown with some of my girlfriends, go shopping at all the neat little shops and then end the day with a trip to a day spa for a massage and pedicure.
What’s your favorite activity to do with your kids? We love to go to the library together. Our local library always offers puppet shows, craft parties, special guest entertainers, and story times. I love seeing how excited my children are every time we go through the library doors. We pick out books and movies together and always have an enjoyable time.
Thank you for your time and insight Beth! You truly are an inspiration.
Do you remember the excitement on Charlie’s face when he won a golden ticket and had the chance to go to the Chocolate Factory? Well, Baby Age is giving you the chance to win a Golden Ticket! You won’ t end up at a chocolate factory, but you will end up with great baby gear! From strollers to bassinets to Elmo potties and walkers – you could be in baby gear heaven.
It’s very easy to enter. Check out Baby Age for more information!
Who hasn’t grown up having hours of fun with play-dough? Here at Kolcraft we were talking about all the “works of art” we made out of play-dough so we had lots of fun “test driving” today’s fun Friday activity; edible play-dough! This simple activity is easy to do, edible and good for the environment!
What you will need*:
- 2 cups of peanut butter
- 6 tablespoons of honey
- Nonfat dry milk or milk plus flour
- Cocoa or carob for chocolate flavor (optional)
- Edible treats for decoration (we used strawberries)
*We used organic ingredients
- Combine ingredients in a bowl and mix adding enough dry milk or milk plus flour to reach of the consistency of bread dough.
- Add cocoa or carob if desired
- Shape, decorate and eat!
Share your fun play-dough ideas with us in the comment section or post your edible play-dough art in our Magical Moments Gallery!