Take A Chance

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

By Rachel Hoeing

I was with a group of women the other day and one of them commented that they saw I had won a T-shirt through a contest on Facebook. The other replied and said, “She wins EVERYTHING! It’s not fair. I never win anything.”

In all honesty, I do win quite a bit of contests, raffles, giveaways, etc, but guess why I win them? I actually enter them!

I asked the two women who said they “never win anything” how often they actually enter giveaways and they both replied saying they try to win things every so often. Well ladies, how do you expect to win if you don’t enter? Read More

Dirty Words

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

By TMoM member Kelly Hines

I found it in my daughter’s bathroom drawer: a small cut-out of a brightly colored cartoon character she had drawn. I smiled, thinking that beneath the teenaged exterior there still existed a little girl. Then I noticed the caption -

“&*$% off!”

So much for my little girl.  Read More

What I Won't Miss When They Get Older (and a few things I will)

Friday, January 16, 2015

By Guest Blogger Annah Matthews, Author of Things Momma Told Me

"Cherish every minute with them. It will be over before you know it and you'll miss it."

I totally get it! I really do understand that life does go by so quickly. That I need to embrace the moments with my children when they're little. That they will grow up and that I will miss cleaning little handprints off of the dishwasher.

But if you tell me that you loved every minute of having your children at home with you, then I tell you that you have flat out forgotten. Thank God that He allows us to forget many parts of motherhood, or else we would have all been extinct by now.

I will not miss taking a road trip while the three of you are simultaneously yelling at each other to scoot over, don't touch me, I don't like this video, and Mommy I have to go to the potty (when three minutes ago we stopped to get you a snack.)  Read More

An Un-Resolution

Monday, January 05, 2015

By TMoM member Kelly Hines

Christmas is over, and the New Year is upon us; time to put away decorations and general feelings of goodwill. Time to stop focusing on things like helping our fellow man and concentrate on what’s really important - our weight.

My women friends are, almost without exception, incredibly apologetic about their weight. The overweight ones apologize for being overweight, the thin ones apologize for not being as thin as they used to be. We universally bemoan ‘the holidays’ as this terrible time when we are force fed delicious food and our pants get a little snug. We resolve, with the New Year, to get skinny, to get fit, to run a marathon, to go meatless, to eat organic, to cut out sugar, to take up yoga, to eliminate fast food, to tone up, to slim down, to do anything - anything - except just be who we are today.  Read More

Happy New Year ~ Is it really 2015?

Thursday, January 01, 2015

By Rachel Hoeing

Happy New Year! When I sit and think about it, I honestly cannot comprehend that it is 2015. I remember writing papers in school about "the future" and what it would be like. We thought the future was 2000 and we would all be robots traveling in spaceships and time machines. Well, we flew past the year 2000 in no time and have landed in 2015. Holy cow.

More often than not, I think of an event and find myself saying, "Was that really 10 years ago? 20 years ago? It feels like just yesterday!"

Well, case in point, I have compiled some fun pop culture facts for you from the past few decades so you can reminisce about the past and look forward to the future! Read More

Confessions of a Wannabe Wife and Mom

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

By Guest Blogger Danya M. Jordan

Dear Wife and Mom,

As we wind down from holiday festivites, I wanted to take a few moments, from a single woman’s perspective, to encourage you today. It seems our hearts are naturally wired for discontentment.

Ye who arises early; packs lunches; matches children’s outfits; struggles with work/life balance; finds lost socks for ye husbands; squeezes out time to exercise; picks up poop after the family dog; arrives just moments to spare in carpool line before and after school; attempts to be creative and healthy making family meals when ordering a pizza would be, oh, so much easier; ye who tries to train your children in the way they should go…this bud’s/this blog’s for you.  Read More

Not the Perfect Gift

Monday, December 22, 2014

By TMoM member Kelly Hines

I’d always start looking for it around the first of December - the package from my Great Aunt Marge. It would be accompanied by a card with several Precious Moments-type figures on the front, each one labeled with one of our names. “Kelly”, it might say in old lady scrawl above the pretty little girl. “Auntie Margaret”, might be the bird flying above her head. My children’s names would be written above puppy dogs, ladybugs, and rosy cheeked babies.

The package itself would contain a treasure from the thrift store, almost always out of date or unusable. What, exactly, could a person do with a calendar from 1992? One year, I unwrapped a cream colored robe, which was actually quite lovely. I unfolded it. And unfolded it some more. And some more. When I put it on, it trailed the floor by a good 8 inches. “I saw this and thought of you, because you’re so tall,” the card read.  Read More

This Time of Year ...

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

By Rachel Hoeing
I have caught myself lately saying “This time of year I love this, and this time of year of love that!" Autumn turning to winter can be such a beautiful time!  It is easy to get caught up in the stress and anxiety of holidays, but if we take a moment to "stop and smell the snow," we realize how many things we have to be thankful for and also realize that the little things often don't matter much. I want to share some of my wintery favorite things and hope you will share yours as well.  Read More

10 Things Every Mama Needs To Hear

Friday, December 12, 2014

By Guest Blogger Annah Matthews, author of Things Momma Told Me

We all have those days. Days where everything we do feels fruitless. Nothing stays clean for more than five minutes. The laundry pile only seems to get larger, never smaller. The to do list gets longer. The children are bored and refuse to get along. No, Thank yous. No, Great Job Mama. Does anyone around here care that I've swept the floor for the 8th time today and wiped up more spills than I care to count? Probably not. So for all of us out there that just need a little pick me up, happy hour, hang in there, pat on the back moment, this list is for you. Read More

Are We Having Fun Yet?

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

By TMoM Team Member Allison Tobey

On average, two million people fly per day, so I am sure every one of these two million passengers has their own story to tell. I want to share one of my flying experiences, because at the very moment it was happening, I felt l was the only person having a rough day.  Read More

Tips for the Very Best Thanksgiving Ever

Monday, November 24, 2014

By TMoM Member Kelly Hines

My husband and I started dating two weeks before Thanksgiving, and this year marks the twenty-fourth time we have celebrated the holiday together. Twenty-four years of blended families and arguments over whether it’s called stuffing or dressing (it’s dressing, by way), of monumental feasts and epic disasters. In this time I’ve learned a few things about family dynamics, and about how this holiday brings us together like a big, warm bowl of mashed potatoes. With gravy, of course.

Here are my tips on making this Thanksgiving one to remember: Read More

The Christmas Tree Invaders

Thursday, November 20, 2014

By TMoM Team Member Allison Tobey

We have lots of family traditions, but our all-time favorite is going to Christmas tree farms to spend the day to hunt down the perfect tree. One Saturday in December of 2012, we ventured out and spent all day choosing, cutting and stringing the tree to the top of the car. We found the best spot in our house, strung the lights, hung the ornaments and admired this beautiful creation. Over the next week, we added wrapped gifts that completed the look of Christmas.

One evening we were hanging out in the family room watching TV when I saw a little black bug crawl across the sofa cushion. No big deal - I crushed the little bug with a paper towel and tossed it in the trash. About a minute later, we saw a few more little black tick-like bugs on the sofa arm and cushions. My husband got up to see what was happening and started screaming that there were hundreds, maybe thousands of bugs on the floor and sofa, in the tree, on the gifts, and crawling up the windows….they were everywhere!  Read More

I Didn't Know

Friday, November 14, 2014

By Guest Blogger Thea DeLoreto, author of the blog The Lint Trap

I didn't know it would be this hard. It is just keeping small humans alive. A little food, some milk, water, get them out of the house regularly, and they should be good to go. Right? RIGHT? But it takes so so so much more. It takes backbone, and nerves. Humor. Patience. It takes organization and understanding. It takes love and soul and strength in equal measures. And it takes patience. Did I mention that one? Mad patience. Read More

Signs You May Be Raising Huck Finn, Tom Sawyer or a Mark Twain Character

Thursday, November 13, 2014

By Guest Blogger Abbie Gale, author of the blog All That Makes You

Signs you might be raising raising Huck Finn, Tom Sawyer or a Mark Twain character...

1. You keep old rusty nails in your pocket and you pretend to find them all over the yard to try to scare him into wearing shoes.

2.  When you pick him up from school he climbs into the backseat and says in his sweet I’m talking to a critter voice, “Oh, there you are!  I have been looking all over for you!” He is NOT talking to YOU.   That has you wondering WHAT you have been driving around with inside of your car, unaware. This critter he saved from the pool skimmer. Oh the tears from having to release him back into the wild! Read More

Chicken Pox: It’s Baaaack!

Monday, November 10, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

Just when you thought this pesky virus died off in the 80s along with your Holly Hobbie ovens and Shrinky Dinks…welp, think again. It recently reared its  fleshy, crusty heads in my house this past week, and yes, my kids had been vaccinated!

It all started innocently enough. My 10-year-old daughter, Emily, woke up with a few itchy bumps on her hand. My first thought was “Oh no, it’s mulluscum.” Not that there’s really anything to worry about with mulluscum, but my son had it once and those bumps are not cute. And having not-so-cute bumps all over the body of easily-grossed out tween would not sit well. So I shooed her off to the bus stop and said we’ll take a closer look at the bumps when she got home.

Eight hours later, she got off the bus covered head to toe in itchy bumps and red splotches.  Read More

Kindergarten is Kicking my Butt

Thursday, October 30, 2014

By Guest Blogger Anna Harget, author of This Perfect Mess Blog

Jack started kindergarten this year. He has a summer birthday, so instead of sending him to full-day kindergarten at an elementary school, we decided to send him to a half-day kindergarten at a preschool. We are treating it more as a Pre-K and planning on sending him to full-day kindergarten next year.

We're considering this "Kindergarten: Round 1" and I'm so glad because kindergarten is kicking my butt. Read More

Reflections on Year One of Motherhood

Monday, October 27, 2014

By Guest Blogger Emily Saunders

A few weeks ago my “baby” boy celebrated his first birthday.  It’s still surreal to me that a whole year has passed, yet there were days along the way that seemed impossibly long when naps didn’t happen, teeth were aching, or no place was good enough for sleep except Mama’s chest when she desperately needed a nap.  It’s been the best year and the most difficult year and the emotions involved are too complex to put into words.

I am most certain that I learned and grew more spiritually, physically, mentally and emotionally than I EVER have. I suppose that’s what becoming a Mom will do. God uses parenthood to teach us big things about his plans and his ways.   Read More

Stranger on a Park Bench

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

By Guest Blogger Aprille Donaldson, author of the blog Beautiful in His Time

A few months ago, I found myself sitting on a bench at Bolton Park, watching my 3-year-old play in the sand with the trucks I had brought along. Two moms entered the park with their children, who both had visible special needs. I'm not entirely sure, but I think that one of the children had Down Syndrome.

I wanted to engage them in conversation. I wanted to tell them how my three best friends are special needs moms whose children have autism. I wanted to tell them that I think they are amazing. I wanted to show them empathy and encouragement. I wanted them to know that I care - that I get it. But, in reality, I knew that the extent of my knowledge of special needs probably paled in comparison to their realities. Read More

Thanks for Being Honest!

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

Last month we ran this fun survey to measure your scruples – as moms, as wives, as friends, and as the good citizens we all know we are. The survey was completely anonymous, and so we asked respondents to be as honest as possible since there was no chance for judgment.

Well, the results are in, and honestly, I’m a bit relieved to know I am not the only one with certain actions or thoughts! Maybe you’ll feel the same, or maybe you’ll be surprised by the results. Either way, take a moment to see how more than 100 TMoM readers responded, and let us know what you think (you can still comment anonymously!).

Thanks for being honest with us… Read More

Good Manners Pay Off

Monday, September 29, 2014

By Rachel Hoeing

My husband and I have always tried our best to teach our children to be respectful and use good manners. I am almost too mannerly at times and find myself saying please and thank you even when it is not necessary, but I have always felt that too much is better than none at all in the manners department.

I wrote a blog recently about how to model compassion and kindness for your children. You can read it here. I think these things go hand-in-hand with good manners. We have worked on these things for years, but my kids never quite caught on to the whole "respect", "manners", "kindness" thing, but now, at ages 9 and 11, they are finally beginning to see the benefits of using your manners and treating others the way you would like to be treated.   Read More

Midlife Milestones

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

By Rachel Hoeing

We often hear of men and women in their 30's and 40's who start doing crazy things which differ greatly from their usual habits. Buying a Ferrari when they've always owned a four-door sedan. Getting tattoos when they never even considered this an option previously. Some will refer to these things as a "midlife crisis." I like to refer to them as Midlife Milestones!

Why not?

When we are babies, it is a milestone to walk, talk, try new foods, roll over, laugh. We are trying new things, and finding the world around us. As adults, I think we should still be able to try new things and explore the world around us without being labeled as having a few screws loose or going through a crisis! Read More

Calling ALL DADS: Consider Being a Room Parent

Saturday, September 20, 2014

By Guest Blogger and Dad Travis Finn

Class Room Parents - A.K.A Room Moms, Class coordinators, Liaison, Mediator, Communicator, Brown-noser, Teacher's Pet..Etc. Very rarely, and shamefully so, does the description include the word "DAD".

When I was looking for ideas on this subject, it took hours to find reference or guidance targeted towards Dads wanting be a room parent. Most everything I came across appeared to be designed for Moms. There are even websites completely dedicated to and titled "ROOM MOMS". The clear minority used my favorite term..."ROOM PARENT" - removing gender from the role and thus possibly encouraging more involvement from Dads. As a third year room parent, and this being my first year with 2 kids at the same school, so I am a Room Parent for 2 classes, I am glad I chose to take on this role and connect with my children's classes. Read More

Let's Be Honest

Friday, September 12, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

How many times have you wondered whether your secret thoughts are shared by others? Or if you were crazy to make the decision that you did? Or if you are the only one who does some of the things you do?

We'll, we're here today to find out thanks to a fun little survey designed to measure our scruples - as moms, as wives, as friends, and as the good citizens we all know we are. Of course this is not a scientifically designed survey – it’s just a simple list of questions and scenarios - some of which may have come up in conversations you've had, while others you may have only seen on Lifetime TV! Read More

Grandparent Detox: The 5 Step Survival Method

Thursday, August 28, 2014

By Guest Blogger Anna Hargett, author of This Perfect Mess

My children love their grandparents and the grandparents LOVE their grandchildren.

It's a love that leads to freezers stocked with popsicles, marathon games of Candyland, and a grandpa who has erected a few tents in his living room and installed a swing from the ceiling in the hopes that the grandchildren will mistake his house for a circus, no doubt.

It's a dangerous love. Once the kids get a taste, they want MORE. In fact, I suspect before our visits the grandparents plot ways to guarantee their grandchildren's loyalty and affection. Let's see...we'll start with ice cream for breakfast and then we'll play Thomas the Train for 3 hours and then maybe a trip to the moon!  Read More

Cut the Cord

Thursday, August 14, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

“You really should cut that cord soon,” my mom recently joked to me. At first I did not know what she was referring to. I usually don’t describe my kids as “clingy” or “dependent.” In fact, I’m all about instilling independent qualities in children. My husband and I are always encouraging our kids to try something different – or going somewhere new – without having to depend on friends or mom and dad to be right there with them.

But then I looked down at my son who was walking next to me, and understood what she was talking about. Read More

Did I Ask For Your Opinion?

Saturday, August 09, 2014

By Anonymous

With the start of school just around the corner, we thought we'd re-run this post from a few years ago that received quite a bit of comments. Let us know what you think!

It’s a conversation most parents have had a hundred times. You are at the playground and you start chatting with another parent, inevitably exchanging the basic facts about your kids- names, ages, siblings, and interests. I’m a mostly stay-at-home mom, so these little conversations were sometimes my only adult interactions in the course of a day. So, you can imagine my surprise when my daughter turned five in October and the mommy chitchat I used to happily partake in took an unexpected, and often ugly, turn. Read More

The Not-So-Awesome or Relaxing Summer Vacation

Friday, August 08, 2014

By Guest Blogger Thea DeLoreto, author of the blog The Lint Trap 

Ahhhh, vacation. The most anticipated week of the year. We go with family. We rent beautiful houses that we could never afford to own and swim in pools that we could never find time to clean. We sleep on sheets we don’t have to wash and eat on plates we didn’t have to buy. We frolic on the beach with our perfect children who are building sandcastles and flying kites. We enjoy ice cream, shrimp and cocktails. It really is a lovely time to unwind and slow down and enjoy time together.

But it is not always awesome. And it is rarely relaxing. Did I mention we are with kids on this vacation? Read More

Please, Please...Go Back to Bed!

Thursday, August 07, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

A few years ago, my then-four-year-old had taken on a new routine to wake my husband and I up at least once a night and sometimes up to 10 times (yes, we've counted) for a range of reasons. Some were valid, most were not. I originally wrote this post when I was in the fog of it all. If you are in this same predicament, perhaps this post - and the comments below - will help you. Or if you have additional suggestions, please share as well.

Now I don't mean to scare all of you who are new moms, those who are expecting, or those of you who are simply thinking of having a baby - but for the first seven years as a mom - I could probably count on my fingers and toes how many nights of full sleep I actually had in total.  Read More

Whatcha Think: Vaccinations

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

The topic of whether or not to vaccinate a child – or putting children on our own vaccination schedules – is one that intrigues me. Unfortunately, I don’t know enough about the topic to write a fair blog which is why I hope to generate comments and conversation with today’s Whatcha Think column.

I am a total by-the-book kind of mom. If my doctor tells me my child needs X, Y and Z shots on certain dates – all at one time – and again in a couple of years – I’m like, “Sure, sounds good. Whatever you say!” The thought of intervening in a medically established routine scares me. Even though I’ve heard many reports saying vaccination schedules are not a “one fits all” type of requirement – as well as the concerns about certain shots causing certain negative outcomes – I have always gone along with what my doctor tells me because, frankly, I don’t trust myself to make these kinds of decisions.

That’s why I’d love for you to weigh in. Please leave a comment and let us know which side of the debate you stand on and why. To get the conversation started, I have Pros and Cons and questions below. Read More

If patience is a virtue then why does it feel like a vice?

Monday, July 28, 2014

By Guest Blogger Annah Matthews, author of Things Momma Told Me

It never fails. I've just begun a good conversation with my husband, dialogue is flowing, we're exchanging ideas and thoughts and from the backseat of the car I hear, "Hey Mommy do you know why they call Texas the Lonestar State?" Uhmmm no, but don't interrupt me right now while Dad and I are talking.

17 seconds later.

Mommy, are you done talking to Daddy because I really need to tell you something.
No, stop interrupting me. You need to be patient.

18 seconds later.

Can I tell you now?  Read More

The Dirty Diaper Dilemma

Sunday, July 20, 2014

By Guest Blogger Shannon Ford

Let's face it: Most of us will have dirty diapers to change at least until age two. In the summer months, it doesn't pose as much of a problem for me when we are out and about. If a diaper change is necessary, I don't hesitate to change my son in the back seat or back of my SUV. However, this is not an option for me when it is cold and/or pouring rain. I don't want to stand in the rain, and I'm certainly not going to expose my child's legs and bum to the frigid temperatures.

It is impossible to change him in the car without a door or the back open. (Believe me, I have tried to imagine the possibility.) Just a few weeks ago, I was with my mom in a very well-known wireless phone store to help her with a new purchase. My mom is not very tech-savvy and wants the easiest and cheapest phone possible. Absolutely no bells and whistles so this should take very little time, right? This was when it was so cold and snowy out…Our wait time was approximately two minutes as we entered the door. We selected the phone in less than five minutes. So, it should take no longer than ten minutes to have everything set up…or so the sales clerk told us.  Read More


Friday, July 11, 2014

By Guest Blogger Kelly Hines, author of the blog Southern Fried Children

I started going gray in my early twenties. It was a novel thing then; it made me feel sophisticated and wise. And it was fun for me to roll my eyes and complain to my friends.

"Oh my gah, you guys! I'm so old!", I'd say, as I pulled tiny pants over a tummy unmarked by carbs and children, up to a waistline that did not yet meet my boobs. (It was an alarming experience to look in the mirror one day recently and wonder what the funny lump on my stomach was, only to touch it and discover it was my nipple.) Read More

Why I Don’t Answer My Phone

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

By Rachel Hoeing

I had been playing phone tag with a friend of mine for a while. Once we finally got in touch we enjoyed catching up and then she commented, “Well I had been trying to call forever, you but you didn’t answer your phone!” It was almost an underlying dig somehow insinuating that I was avoiding her call or purposely did not answer because I did not want to talk to her. I didn’t comment, but had one of those moments after we hung up where you think, “Awww man, I should have said …”

So today I will say what I should have said. This situation got me thinking about the fact that we have become WAY too accessible.(Email, texts, home phone, cell phone, etc) It irked me because there are about a thousand reasons why I may not answer my phone and none of them have to do with WHO is calling. Beware, much sarcasm ahead.

So what I should have said was, “Did you ever consider … Read More

Five Questions that Make Me Cringe

Monday, July 07, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

I ran this post a few years ago and am surprised that - after a few more years of parenting - these questions still make me cringe! Take a read and let me know if you feel the same way. And check the comments - maybe you want to respond to a comment that was already shared.

Most of you reading this are moms, and while we may be in different stages of motherhood, I’m guessing we’ve shared similar experiences. From being pregnant to losing the baby weight. To celebrating our child’s milestones. From choosing a school to developing a rapport with a teacher. And then to having the house to ourselves again when the kids go off to school.

I’m sure lots of you can say you’ve been-there-done-that with at least one scenario listed above. That’s why I think it’s safe to share a list of five common questions that you’ve probably been asked at one point in your life as a mom. I don’t believe anyone means any harm when asking these questions, yet each of these questions make me cringe.

Listed below is a countdown of questions I consider annoying to totally offensive. Read More

What I Did and What I Wished I Had Done ...

Sunday, July 06, 2014

By Lisa Lemieur, author of  http://picklesandcheeseblog.blogspot.com/

8 Things I Am Glad I Did When My Kids Were Little
1. I am glad I volunteered as much as I did in my kid’s classrooms.  When they were in elementary school I was there a lot.  Sometimes I was the “Room-Mom” but most of the time I was just a helper.   And I’d like to think my kids liked having me there.  Believe me, they won’t want you there when they are in high school.  Get it in while you can. Read More

Nana Would Be Appalled

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

By Rachel Hoeing

Have you ever wondered what your grandparents think about the way you raise your family?

I've written about my sweet grandmother previously. Although she passed away just five years ago, she suffered from Alzheimer's for quite some time and I don't think she realized how much the world had changed and what had become "acceptable." When she was in her prime I saw her give plenty of looks to women who wore shirts too tight and skirts too short. "Oh, that's terrible," she would murmur under her breath. I saw her "shoo" her hand at the TV when people would curse too much and roll her eyes when her husband had too many beers.

My Nana was a little Italian woman who was quiet, sensitive and the perfect lady. Most of the time! Every once in a while that hot Italian temper would surface, but she was usually very kind-hearted and easy-spirited. She spent her days cooking, cleaning, taking care of her kids, providing for her husband, praying the rosary, and talking on the phone to her sisters. She always wore a calf-length skirt and pantyhose. She never even wore a pair of slacks until she was well into her 70's when we finally talked her into it. She never got her driver's license and never seemed to care. The church was across the street, the grocery store was a block away, and since her husband and all her sisters drove, she could easily get wherever she needed to go.  Read More

What’s Up with Moms and Target?

Saturday, June 28, 2014

By Guest Blogger Dominque, a Kernersville mom and author of the blog They Will Love Your Effort

The running joke among my mom friends and I is the following:
1. I am headed to Target
2. I ran into you at Target
3. I just got back from Target

So many people wonder ‘What’s going with Target? Did they brainwash Moms turning them into Target addicts? Is the Target symbol imprinted on them like a homing beacon?’

Well…here’s my perspective: Read More

Ain’t Nobody Got Time for That

Friday, June 13, 2014

By Guest Blogger Elizabeth Smith

A couple of months ago I wrote a blog with a list of tips and tricks for how to help manage the crazy that is being a working mom. Unfortunately my list of tips and tricks was not enough. I am still getting my arms around this adventure that is being a working mom of two. When my conscious decisions were not enough to keep it all straight my brain took it upon itself to forget some things. While I would not recommend these activities I am hoping you will join me in a good laugh at them. Read More

15 Things Lifeguards Want You To Know

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

By Rachel Hoeing

Summer is here and no doubt many of you will be spending long days at the pool. If you have never been a lifeguard, you may be surprised to find out that there is much more to the job than just getting a tan. I reflected on my own experience with life-guarding many years ago, and also asked local lifeguards the most important things they would tell parents and kids this summer. Enjoy the helpful, funny and sarcastic replies below.  Read More

Which Flops Do You Flip For?

Tuesday, June 03, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

I have old lady feet. When I take those first steps out of bed each morning, I look - and feel -  like an 80 year old. It’s terrible, but for years I’ve been battling plantar fasciitis – a condition that doesn't sound like it should affect any of us in our 30s or 40s. As if that’s not bad enough, I’m also limited to what I can wear on my feet which makes summer shoe shopping a challenge. I’m truly jealous of all you who can wear those super-cute flat footed thongs or a cheap pair of flip flops you can buy on the fly.

So when it comes to flip flops, I’m always at a loss for what to wear. Unfortunately the kind I "should wear" are not always that cute. A few weeks ago a friend posted this same dilemma on her Facebook page and asked people to chime in with their favorite flip flop brands. Below is the list that resulted (with the most popular choices at the top) along with some commentary associated with each brand. Read More

Whatcha Think: “Friending” Teachers on Facebook

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

Now that the school year is coming to a close, I thought it would be fun to toss around the topic of connecting with your child’s teachers on Facebook. Whether it’s you reaching out to “friend” a teacher, or a teacher in your school reaches out to “friend” you, is this a good or bad idea? Or when students connect with current and former teachers on Facebook, do you think this is asking for trouble or is it not a big deal? Read More


Saturday, May 17, 2014

By Guest Blogger and TMoM member Kelly Hines, author of the blog Southern Fried Children

Things I should not be allowed to do:
~ Watch dog food commercials
~ Listen to Sarah McLachlan songs
~ Attend school functions

Because all of these things make me a teary eyed, red faced, simpering baby. 

Twice in the past week, I have been to my daughter Katie's school and been reduced to tears. The first time, during the PTO meeting, as they gave character awards to students in each grade level. I listened, I applauded, I cried and cried. I knew none of the children. Read More

My Penny Party

Friday, May 09, 2014

By Rachel Hoeing

The good ol' days. No matter your current age, the good ol' days often means those childhood years occurring between the ages of 7 and 12. The years where you were old enough to only remember being carefree. You just knew how to have fun.

When my kids have a day where their creativity soars, outside adventure takes place, and neighborhood friends bond, I want to shout it from the rooftops because I am so proud of them and it reminds me of my own good ol' days. I think we need to encourage our kids' creative ideas, no matter how crazy they may seem.

This thinking reminded me of a "Penny Party" that I hosted back when I was 10 years old ... Read More

25 Easy Ways to Be an Annoying Parent

Monday, April 28, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

I am in no way a perfect parent, and I don’t pretend to be. But in the 10 short years I’ve been a mom, I am amazed how many common parental antics can quickly become annoying. And I’m sure there are many things I do each and every day that drive other parents crazy. It’s like a rite of passage. Once you become a parent, you inevitably acquire one or two (or maybe more) habits that make you seem like a nut job. We all know it’s not our fault. We love our kids and we’re passionate about being the best parents we can be. We just get a little deranged from time to time in doing our jobs.

After chatting with some friends, I jotted down some of our favorite pet peeves. This list literally took one day to pull together which means these annoying antics are top of mind for many! I’m guessing there are more you can add to my list. Take a read, and let me know if you can relate! Read More

Time Is A Powerful Gift

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

By Guest Blogger Elizabeth Stack

Easter always makes me feel like anything is possible. That miracles and new beginnings are just around the corner, waiting to be experienced. This Easter was no different. And neither was my first Easter as a mother.

Ten years ago on Easter Sunday, I stood in church crying tears of pure joy, grateful for the blessings God had given my family. Our son, Win, had just been born 7weeks earlier -- 10 weeks before his due date -- weighing only 3 pounds, 13 ounces. Yet somehow, miraculously, sweet Win had thrived from the minute he graced this earth. He never experienced any of the issues typically faced by preemies his age and size. In fact, the doctors were so amazed by his progress, they deemed him ready to go home after just three short weeks in the Neonatal ICU. His miraculous health was the reason for my tears and gratitude that Easter Sunday. We truly had reason to celebrate.

But sadly, three short weeks later, I was crying very different tears. On May 3rd, Win’s scheduled due date, God welcomed Win into His loving arms and we kissed our sweet baby boy goodbye for the very last time.  Read More

White Lies We Love to Tell

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

I think one of the best perks of being a parent is the ability to tell a white lie when you need to – and not feel guilty about it (at least try not to). We all tell white lies to our children, and if you say you haven’t, then you’re lying! White lies are ideal when you want to put off the truth so our kids can hold on to the magic of childhood as long as possible. Plus let’s admit: white lies come in handy when we want to teach a lesson, encourage our child to do the right thing, or let mom and dad have a break every so often.

I brainstormed my favorite white lies (from childhood and parenthood), quizzed my friends on their most memorable misstatements, compiled them all in a list below, and they’re terrific! Let us know if any of these sound familiar, or better yet, share new ones (as a comment at the end of this post) that you’ve used and can recommend to other parents!  Read More

Why I Am Proud to Drive A Mom-mobile

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

By Rachel Hoeing

I heard a comment the other day from a mom at school ... "I told myself I will NEVER drive a minivan."

Really? Are we still saying that?

Maybe it is because I have been a mom for almost 11 years, or maybe it is because I am 40 years old, or maybe it is because I have never given a darn what I drive, but I am 100% perfectly fine with driving my mom-mobile. As far as people thinking my car isn't cool enough, I am over it. Here's why: Read More

No, there's no app for that......

Saturday, April 12, 2014

By Guest Blogger Heather Keenan

In a world where it seems new gadgets are invented weekly to make our daily routines easier I have found, as a mother, that there are just some things in life that still have to be done the old fashioned way, with time and lots of patience. That being said, I have discovered that I do not always excel in the patience department with my adorable, loving, strong willed two-year-old! After a particularly rough day with her I decided to take some time out to reflect on what could be done to make sure that days like those were limited. This is what I came up with.

The main issue at our house as of late is potty training. I'm not a fan of the wording, potty "training", so let's call it potty "time". While she has been using the potty for a few months now, and doing very well, she does, just like two-year-olds do, have the dreaded accident here and there. I can deal with that. Most of the time. Then there are those times where I swear she is just peeing on the floor for fun. That's where my patience issue comes into play.  Read More

The Good in Goodbye

Monday, April 07, 2014

By Guest Blogger Jennifer Richwine, author of The World Spins Madly On

Today I threw away an entire pantry shelf, and it felt amazing. I bought this house fifteen years ago, and for over a decade I've been fighting with this shelf that never performed the one duty for which it was designed. One night early in 2000 I decided to clean out the pantry, rearrange it so I knew where everything was and throw out what was out of date. And as I moved all of the soup and vegetable cans to one particular shelf, it collapsed under the weight. What I quickly understood was that this wasn't the first time the shelf had fallen. It had obviously been jury rigged by the previous owner, with pegs that didn't quite fit in the holes that had been drilled into the pantry walls. Over the years I've been to the hardware store numerous times, taken measurements, photos on my iPhone, purchased a variety of pegs and fillers, supports and products guaranteed to fix the problem. But nothing ever worked. The shelf collapsed under even the smallest weight, or tilted so far to one side nothing would stay on it. And it frequently betrayed me with no warning, sometimes falling in the dead of night, waking me up with my heart racing as its contents clattered to the floor. I tried to pretend it didn't exist ... every time I opened the pantry the perfectionist in me avoided looking at the shelf that taunted me with its glaring flaws.  Read More

Are You Going to Eat That?

Friday, April 04, 2014

By Guest Blogger Kelly Hines, TMoM member and author of her personal blog Southern Fried Children

There are moments in your life where time stands still. When it seems you are a disembodied spirit, floating above, peering down at your corporeal self doing something incredibly stupid. From the ether, your spirit-self opens its mouth in a vain attempt to communicate, but all that escapes is awhoooosh of air. In your head, you scream- that is not chocolate!

It is too late.  Read More

The Ups and Downs of Being a Single, Divorced Mom

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Compiled by Rachel Hoeing

With Triad Moms on Main, one of my favorite parts of this job is giving women a perspective that they may not have thought about previously. We've been able to promote empathy from our readers by sharing stories from moms with special needs children, women who have struggled with significant loss, mothers of multiples, and women who are battling life-threatening illnesses, just to name a few. We've shared blogs written by business owners, teachers, doctors, dads, counselors, and more. Each blog can bring about awareness, expand our minds and open our hearts.

The group of mothers I am highlighting today are single, divorced mothers. I wanted these women to share some of their struggles and some of their joys so that those of us who have not been in their shoes may find some empathy, some sympathy, and also some things to help these women celebrate. I interviewed a number of local mothers and combined their answers below. 

If you can relate, we would love for you to share some of your ups and downs in the comment section below.   Read More

Should We Choose Our Child’s Friends?

Monday, March 31, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

I ran this post on TMoM three years ago, but it's a topic I think about often as my kids get older. Let me know if you can relate! ~ Katie

Is it a good or bad idea to choose who your kids play with and make friends with? As adults we pick our own friends all the time. Sure, and our kids do too. But as parents, is it possible to pick and choose your kids’ friends? By doing so, could we help them navigate around all the mean girls and boys? Should we even try? And if so, are we just asking for trouble? Read More

What Are You Watching Now?

Saturday, March 29, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

I’m a total bore when it comes to pop culture TV. I’ve never gotten hooked on a reality show. I have no idea who any of the Real Housewives are, and just recently learned who the Long Island Medium is. I don’t get the allure with The Bachelorette, The Bachelor, or any of the singing competitions – unless it’s the joy of watching trains wrecks. I'm terrible at keeping up with a show that I have to watch a certain night every week (even with the option to DVR). I rarely watch sitcoms, and I can never stay awake long enough to watch all those late night talk shows!

My MO after the kids go to bed is to either work, play Words with Friends, watch the news or read. Yep, I’m a snooze fest. That is, until I discovered a new way to watch TV (thanks to a plethora of technology!). Read More

You might be a housewife if ...

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

By Guest Blogger Annah Matthews, author of Things Momma Told Me

Strength and dignity are her clothing, and she laughs at the time to come. Proverbs 31:25 (ESV)

My three children have proven to me over and over again that I really have no clue what I am doing but I am humbled and blessed to be called their mama. They are great kids and I have learned the key to a happy family is keeping life in perspective and lots of laughter.

We all laugh at ourselves on a regular basis and we refuse to take life so seriously all the time. Being a full-time stay at home mom is less than glamorous and I've still not heard "Good job Mama. Keep up the hard work!" but it has given me some great perspective (and material) on my life.

I bet you’ll find yourself feeling not quite so cra-zay after reading this list compiled from my actual life. So here it goes.  Read More

Advice for Husbands Everywhere

Saturday, March 08, 2014

By Guest Blogger Thea DeLoreto, author of the blog The Lint Trap

Hubs and I have been married for 9 years. NINE. That is almost ten years. That is practically a d-e-c-a-d-e. Also known as for-ev-er. In my time as one half of a pair, I have learned a few things about dudes. I feel it is only right to share these things with husbands. Before y'all are all, "dayum, she dogged her man out for everyone to read," let me be clear. Hubs is not guilty of all of these things right now. 

1.Always put the toilet seat down. Do you know how pissed a wife is when she goes to the potty in the dark after rocking a screaming child back to sleep, only to dunk her lady bits in the same water that resides in the bowl you took a massive dumper in a few short hours ago? Newsflash: it makes her super angry. Like hold your nose and your mouth at the same time for a few seconds while you are asleep, mad. Read More

Do You Need to Get Out More?

Friday, March 07, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

As moms, we’re a busy bunch. Some of us work full or part time, while others stay home keeping the house and family in order. Most of us have family calendars (sometimes color coded, creatively coordinated, and covered in sticky notes or scratch outs), while others rely on personal To Do lists that can easily rival those of fast-paced CEOs. On top of all this, we also wear the many hats of a chauffeur, chef, coach, teacher, nurse, maid, event planner, financial planner, and snuggle buddy, to name a few. So when it comes to a social life, who has the time? And how many of us make it a priority?

That is what today’s post is trying to uncover. Earlier this month, we took a survey  to determine where we fall on the social scale. This was just for fun, and of course it’s not meant to change your lifestyle. Then we randomly selected one respondent to win a $50 Village Tavern gift card. At the end of this post we reveal the results of the survey, an analysis of your score, and the winner of the gift card!  Read More

Sticky Sitter Scenarios

Friday, February 28, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

Growing up, I had very few opportunities to babysit, but there was one job in particular I will never forget. I was asked to watch six kids from two different families - all under one roof.  The families were vacationing in the same beach town I lived, but I did not know them. All the kids were either toddlers or preschoolers - and as a young middle schooler myself - I remember being completely in over my head. There were diaper debacles, kids screaming and crying and running all through the house, and even one locking himself in the bathroom because he pulled the doorknob off from the inside. I don’t recall how I ever got him out, but I did, and I somehow managed to keep the kids safe as well as some semblance of order. But the biggest insult to injury came at the end… Read More

The Myth of More Time

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

By Guest Blogger Amy Buchanan

Jackson baby at Augusta National 2007 Masters TournamentI have noticed something about mothers.

As our kids get older and pass from one milestone to the next, their time with us each day is shorter. School days get longer. Play dates, extracurricular activities and later, part-time jobs, keep them away from home longer.

While we as mothers do not wish their childhoods away, we can't help but relish the extra hours of alone time and productive time their growing up provides us. Read More

The Man I Most Want to Be

Sunday, February 16, 2014

By TMoM Team Member, Kelly Hines

I am not an excellent parent, overall.

I am, at my best, a very good parent. Above average, mostly. I think my kids would agree.

But sometimes, I see or hear or read something that makes me realize how incredibly short I fall of the mark. This week I watched a video of Fred Rogers speaking to the U.S. Senate regarding funding for PBS. This was in 1969. It is six minutes of the most compassionate, loving, and impassioned speech I have ever.

Somewhere around eighty percent of our television viewing in this house is of PBS programs. We are not freaks who don't like cable, we are cheap. But over time, we've found that in addition to being free, it's really good stuff. If I turn on Mister Rogers, my kids are quiet and focused and interested. It is not his warm voice or funny sweaters or gentleness of movement. It is not his quiet or his slowness or the fact that he never, ever, has to yell and shout and jump and sing and holler to get a child's attention. Read More

Grit and Bear It

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

Last year my daughter was struggling in math. We knew she could eventually grasp the concepts, but she was getting easily frustrated and her grades were showing it. She also had an amazing teacher who believed in her and patiently worked with her every step of the way. When it came time for a big test, we were nervous about how she’d fare. Luckily, the test was not timed, and the teacher gave my daughter as much time as she needed. She was the last one to finish, but the teacher would not let her give up until she found an answer to every problem. My daughter happened to score great on her test, but I was worried about her future performance.

Turns out, the teacher taught my daughter more than just math concepts that year. She taught her grit, which has now translated to confidence. Math is no longer something my daughter fears. It’s not her favorite subject, but she knows if she sticks with it, she will prevail. Read More

Why I no longer give a sh*t about my husband’s brain tumor ...

Monday, February 10, 2014

By Guest Blogger Trish Rohr

As the nurse put her arm around my shoulder and walked me to the doors leading out of the ER, I knew that was the moment my life would change permanently and never go back to what it was before. There was a mass in my husband’s head. He was being taken by ambulance to a larger hospital in town, and I had to get in my car and actually drive to the ICU. Surreal.

That was over three years ago, and the lessons I have learned about life, love, faith and hope are endless. I know this with 100% certainty – I am living my best life. Right here and right now. This is THE only life I am going to get, and it is fully up to me to decide how I will live it. Read More

The Top 10 Most Annoying Facebook Posts

Friday, February 07, 2014

By Rachel Hoeing

It's Flashback Friday! From the archives we bring you one of our favorite blogs that Rachel wrote a few years ago. Enjoy ...

Ahhh, Facebook. The addiction that people love to hate and hate to love.  As with most of you I am sure it is tough to imagine what our lives were like before we were able to see cousin Janie's baby 30 seconds after birth, or know what your friend's new home in Europe looks like without ever having to leave your desk. Facebook can be an incredible tool for your social life as well as your business venture and I personally have no plans to leave my virtual Facebook world anytime soon. But in the meantime I thought we could all use a good laugh as I recall some of those status posts that leave you chuckling, rolling your eyes, or picking your chin off the floor ... Read More

20 Lessons I Want to Teach My Daughters

Thursday, February 06, 2014

By Guest Blogger Lisa Witherspoon, author of the blog The Golden Spoons

I recently finished reading a book written by Alexandra Stoddard called Things I Want My Daughters To Know.    I originally picked up the book because, having three daughters, I feel a huge responsibility to teach them everything they need to know to become successful women since I am their primary female role model. I will take any advice or help I can get!  In the book, Stoddard lists about 55 "life lessons" she hopes to have imparted to her two daughters.  Some of the pearls I agreed with; some I did not.  However, it got my "wheels turning" as I thought about all the lessons I want to teach my own daughters.  So - you guessed it - I came up with a list.  (Not to worry - there are nowhere near 55 items on my list.)  Here are the top 20 things I hope my daughters will learn from me as they grow and mature into beautiful women, professionals, wives, and mothers. Read More

Be Honest: Would You Buy These Baby Products?

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

A lot has changed in seven years since I’ve had an infant in the house! There are so many new baby products on the market that I wish I had when my kids were babies. Like a video monitor. Those were just getting popular when mine were little; now it seems like every new mom has one. Or magnetic fasteners on pajamas. Brilliant for middle-of-the-night changes! Or milk savers. Those would have saved me hours of pumping frustration!

And while it wasn’t that long ago, there are also products I used that are now considered taboo. Like the baby walker (pictured left). My daughter used our constantly (of course not near stairs!). Or Baby Einstein products. I had no idea (before writing this post) that they’ve become so controversial. I think I owned just about every DVD, and will admit my kids watched them from their little bouncy seats. Read More

Learning to Love Yourself

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

By Rachel Hoeing

"You have to accept yourself and love yourself just the way you are. You are what you are, and that is all you are. You don't need to pretend to be something else. When you pretend to be what you are not, you are always going to fail."

These words are so powerful. They come from an author I admire, Don Miguel Ruiz. I read his book "The Four Agreements" a few years ago and just recently read it again along with his book "The Mastery of Love." Both are extremely quick reads (just a few hours) but contain a wealth of knowledge within the pages. Both books are also worth reading again and again. I feel that so many of us can benefit from his teachings.  Read More

An Apology to My Brother

Saturday, January 11, 2014

By TMoM Team Member Kelly Hines, author of Southern Fried Children

My brother Mike is the father of three boys. Three boys who are very boy. I remember clearly one visit to their home, when my youngest nephew was two-ish. I spent the entire time suffering from acute anxiety as I watched the boy scale everything in sight, stand in the middle of the kitchen table and yell, and come thisclose to grave injury approximately every five minutes. It was harrowing, to say the least.

And I judged.

Katie was the kind of baby (and toddler, and child) who would keep you on your toes verbally, but would never even consider getting into, well, anything. Julia presents her own unique challenges, but I can generally turn my back on her for more than 3 seconds without disaster.

Then there's Henry. Read More

Friends: They're Good for Your Health

Tuesday, January 07, 2014

By Katie Moosbrugger

Remember this childhood song? "Make new friends, but keep the old. One is silver and the other is gold."

I cannot get that tune out of my head ever since my daughter and I declared our resolutions for the new year. Among a million promises to ourselves (ones that will most likely go broken), one thing we both want to work on is enriching our friendships - both with current and past buds. Read More

American Girl Doll ~ Is it Worth it?

Friday, December 27, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

With the holidays just behind us, I thought I'd rerun this post from last year that stirred up comments from both sides of the argument (see end of post). Plus, you might remember this post that gives the opposite view of my post today. Whichever side you are on, I'd love to hear about it ~ especially with the season of gift giving so fresh in our minds.

Last year around Christmas, my mom called – and in a very excited tone – asked me if my daughter, Emily, would like an American Girl doll. My mom’s other granddaughter (age 10) has one and has absolutely loved it, so she thought this could be a great year for Emily to also receive one.

At first I nearly gushed about what a great gift that would be, and then I held my tongue. It’s not that I don’t like American Girl dolls. I think they are adorable and come with fantastic lessons for girls of all ages. Obviously the entire concept behind American Girl dolls is a brilliant success story.

But – from what I can tell – when you buy an American Girl doll you are not just buying a doll…you’re investing into a whole new lifestyle for your daughter. And that’s what makes me pause and wonder. Is it worth it? Read More

How Sheryl Crow Could Save Christmas

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

By Guest Blogger Mike Crider, author of Twin Dad Talks

I've never been a huge Sheryl Crow fan. Sure, I liked some of the early stuff she did, and kind of quit listening when she was doing duets with Ba-wit-da-ba Kid Rock, but her music takes me back to the late '90's when I was in high school and music was kind of all over the place (i.e. - Alanis Morisette and Spice Girls??)

One song in particular never made sense to me..."Soak Up the Sun". And I know the song has been out a long time, but it never occurred to me until this year that the song has two lines in it that can save the holidays from the consumerism that plagues the month of December. In the song she says, "It's not having what you want, it's wanting what you've got..." Read More

Whatcha Think ~ The Christmas Letter

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

These past few days I've spent a lot of time peeling, licking and labeling - while also reflecting on how the gesture of a holiday card has changed so much in the past few years.

Receiving cards from friends and family is one of my favorite things of the season. But with Facebook and other instant ways to share photos, stories and updates, I worry that the nostalgia is wearing off. I recently saw a Facebook post from someone who said she's not sending cards this year because everyone has seen her photos all year, and she shouldn't need a to send a hard copy in the mail to remind them of their friendship. Harsh, but I can see her point. Read More

Date Night, Shmate Night

Friday, November 29, 2013

By Guest Blogger Kristen Bagwell

Last weekend, I thought I’d make something nice for dinner since we had some extra "Saturday" time. The hubs was upstairs watching THE football game (aka, his chosen one of the 6 that are on), and my daughter was fuzzied up on the couch watching Dora. (I know, I know.) She had eaten, so I anticipated a few minutes of free time to sear the steaks and get them into a hot oven.

I found my mind drifting back to the dating days when the menu/plan would have gone something like this:  Read More

Live Hard, Love Hard, Eat Well.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

By Guest Blogger Julia Chandler

A strange thing happened tonight. I sat down, glass of Cabernet in hand, and watched the evening news. Alone. To start, I am usually running a carpool or making dinner, and I never see the evening news, much less know what current events are going on around me. Second, sitting down for thirty minutes straight only happens if I am driving to Greensboro, or further.

But today I was in the kitchen until 4:00 pm, the kids went home with friends and then straight to soccer this evening. After a very busy but great weekend, this is like a mini-vacation. They are not home yet, but that door will be creaking any moment as I type furiously with my thoughts in mind. Read More

Striving for Simplicity

Thursday, November 14, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

It amazes me how the simple things in life are those that tend to impress and entertain kids the most, and leave them with lasting memories.

The fact that I don’t remember any of my birthday parties is a case in point. I’m sure they were super (I’ve seen pictures!), and I’m sure my parents put a lot of effort into them (although I’m also certain most were simple parties in our own back yard). Nor do I remember many of the toys I had. While I bet I had some, I don’t recall any fancy dolls or games or gadgets. What I do remember most vividly are all the “non-events” and the silly games I played that cannot be bought in a store.

Today, it seems we (parents) are constantly trying to create memories for our kids. We organize lavish birthday parties, plan the most amazing sleepover to date, gift them with toys or electronics that steal their attention for hours, sign them up for a different extracurricular activity for every day of the week, and clutter our weekends with more events we can possibly attend. It’s like we’re taking all the creativity out of childhood. Read More

Car-Rider Chaos

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

How many of you drive your children to school or day care each day?  How many of you pick them up afterward?  How many of you want to strangle someone else in that drop-off or pick-up line each day?  Now is your chance to vent! 

I hear it all the time from moms who are fed up with the parents who think they are above the rules and in-turn, mess up the entire drop-off line for everyone else.  Often times, this causes much road rage, anger, and a very crappy start to someone’s day. It always makes me think of the movie “Mr. Mom,” when Michael Keaton takes his kids to school for the first time and gets reprimanded by every mom in the line as they scream, “You’re doing it wrong!” And if memory serves me correctly, one mom even gives him the finger!  Read More

Mother 'Hood

Monday, November 11, 2013

By Guest Blogger Debbie Wilkins

~ Today I have broken up 18 fights and it’s barely noon on a Saturday.
~ Breakfast was met with an “Is this it?!” and lunch had the response of “Yuck, I don’t want this.”     
~ My house looks like I was robbed.
~ Silence is a sound I miss almost as much as sleep.
~ Violence seems to be the norm around here.
~ Toilets are never flushed.
~ I have 2 holes in walls of my home.  Both occurred by “not me.”
~ Every picture frame hangs unevenly from my kids literally shaking the house as they jump on furniture.

Can I get an amen?!  Read More

I Don't Even Want to "Touch" This

Saturday, November 02, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

It may be just a few days past Halloween, but I’ve already received a holiday wish list from my nine-year-old daughter. Actually, I first got her list this past summer and it includes just one item. This “list” has been left on my pillow, in my closet, on the dashboard of my car, in the refrigerator, and several other unsuspecting places. So what is she asking for? An Apple iPod touch. No surprise there.

I try to argue that she's too young for an expensive and advanced electronic "toy," but in response, she challenges me with: "Name one other nine-year who doesn't have one." I usually can rattle off at least one or two names if I'm lucky, but the list of nine-year-olds without an iPod touch keeps getting shorter and shorter. And I'm actually not surprised by that either.

In the spirit of the upcoming holiday season, I ask, "How soon is too soon for an iPod touch?" Similarly, what is the suggested age for an iPhone? Or an iPad? How about a Kindle Fire? I know lots of kids in elementary school have these fancy gadgets, so I'm sure there are plenty of parents out there who can weigh in! Read More

It Doesn't Matter

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

Keeping things in perspective is difficult. In the heat of the moment, it is easy to get frazzled or lose your cool over many events with your children. When I look back at things that I thought were huge issues, many times, in the end ... it just didn't matter.

When you look at the big picture and the heart-breaking struggles that many families deal with, it can make you realize what is truly important.

I have listed a few things below that I have tried, and in the future will try, to keep in perspective. Please let me know if you agree! Read More

I Failed My Son’s Math Homework

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

By Guest Blogger Karen Grossman, author of the blog Mom in the Muddle

Six years of homework. But who’s counting? It started out okay, but after long kindergarten days my son discovered he really just wanted to play. He sat in his seat, behaved, and did his work at school. Did he really have to do it again at home? “I did this all day at school!” he’d growl through tears over his homework.

I couldn’t blame him. But I had to be tough. “Just do it and in ten minutes it will be over,” I’d offer. By first grade it sunk in. Ever since, he has come home and whipped through his homework at lightning speed—unless he didn’t understand something. Then the probability of a peaceful afternoon was zero. I’d calmly explain the lesson every way that I could, but it was never how the teacher explained it. I’d show him again but he wanted me to work the problem or just give him the answer. He’d squirm and whine and yell and roll on the floor and throw his pencil. Please, just give him the calculator.  Read More

Fatherly Fridays ~ "Raising Fools"

Friday, October 25, 2013

By Guest Blogger Christopher Laney

My wife and I have three boys, all with different personalities yet similar in so many ways. When the oldest was eleven or so, I’d often walk into the family room to find him nearly upside down watching television. There were many variations on the position, but he was always twisted in some fashion, usually with part of his back resting on the floor and his feet on the cushion where most people plant their backsides.

“What are you doing?” I’d say. “How many times have I told you to sit like a normal person? Get up!”

He’d reluctantly stand and attempt to sit on the couch like a gentleman. But within fifteen minutes—two minutes if I left the room and peeked back in—he’d find his way to the floor again, feet on the cushions. Read More

It's National Nut Day!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

Today is UK's National Nut Day. Seriously. I am not kidding. You can read about it here. Yes, there is a day to celebrate nuts. Even though they were intending to celebrate the nutritious and delicious food, nuts, we are going to celebrate witty and crazy people, nuts.

For a little fun, see if you can name the 20 famous "nutty" people below. Email Rachel@triadmomsonmain.com with your 20 guesses. On Thursday we will choose one random winner from all the correct emails and you will win tickets to one of the nuttiest places around - The Comedy Zone! Take a friend, take a date, take your spouse and enjoy a night out with some great laughs. (If you don't know all 20 people below, send us as many correct answers as you can ... who knows ... you still may have the most correct and will win!)

Good luck, you nut jobs! Read More

The Lost Art of the RSVP

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

By Guest Blogger Diane Olsen

The French phrase “respondez, s’il vous plait” means, quite simply, “respond, please” (or as the French say, “respond if you will”). Believe it or not I learned this at the tender age of 6. My mother was a stickler for etiquette and I was curious why all her party invitations said RSVP, with a date and a phone number. She explained to me the origin of the phrase and that it was customary to include it so that the hostess would know how many guests to expect at her event so she could plan accordingly (for her, that usually meant having enough wine!) More than that, she explained, it was just common courtesy to respond when someone asks, “Are you available to attend my party?”

Seems simple enough, right? Read More

Whatcha Think~ Circumcision

Thursday, October 03, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

Last spring I was fortunate to attend my first bris to celebrate TMoM member Dani’s newborn son. I had no idea what to expect, and to be honest, I was really nervous. For those of you who do not know what a bris is (and I was surprised to learn how many of my friends did not know), it’s a Jewish ceremony during which a baby boy (usually around eight days old) is circumcised and blessed – and the ritual symbolizes the baby’s formal link to his Jewish heritage.

It was a beautiful and joyous occasion, and it was silly of me to be so nervous. Up to that point, my only experience with a circumcision was the act of handing my newborn son over to my gynecologist who whisked him away for about an hour in the hospital, and then returned him to me seemingly unharmed. It was something I never really thought about (or wanted to think about); it was just a procedure my husband and I had an unspoken agreement about.

But I’ve since discovered that the act of circumcision is an age-old debate and has become quite the controversy.  Read More

The Great Pumpkin

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

By Kelly Hines, author of the blog Southern Fried Children

"Oh, for the love of Pete! Just give me the knife!" My mother, screaming at my dad; my brother, pumpkin guts smeared in his hair; me, picking shards of pumpkin seeds from between my teeth. 

Pumpkin carving always started with great expectations and enthusiasm. My mom would bring home a beast from the grocery store and spread out the Sunday paper on the kitchen table. She'd saw the top off with her biggest Ginsu, and my brother and I would attack the inside with soup spoons. 

"Pumpkin guts!", we'd moan and squish the flesh between our fingers. My mom would patiently pick out the seeds and wash off the newsprint in the big colander in the sink. Read More

Back to School is for Parents Too!

Saturday, September 28, 2013

By Guest Blogger Suzy Fielders

Now that the kids are back in school, do you ever think about going back to school yourself? Just because you are the parent now doesn’t mean you can’t be a student still too!

I chose to go back to school to get my Master’s degree a few years ago when my daughter was between the ages of two and four. I’m going to be very honest and say this was an extremely hard thing to do. Was it worth all the time and effort? Absolutely! I had started my Master’s prior to my daughter being born but never got to finish it. Around the time she was 18 months old I decided to go back to school and get the degree finally. I knew if I didn’t I would always wonder and ponder on those infamous ‘what if’ questions.  Read More

Sticky Sleepover Scenarios

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

When did we decide – as parents – that sleepovers were a good idea? Sure, the notion can sound dreamy (especially if mom and dad get the house to themselves one night), but let’s admit it: the next day can be a true nightmare for both parents and kids.

We are in full slumber party mode here at my house. Rarely a weekend goes by that I don’t get a request to have so-and-so sleep over or a call from a mom asking for my child to spend the night at their house. Don’t get me wrong...I’m not opposed to sleepovers. They can be a lot of fun and my kids love them – so we’ll continue them. But I’ve also had many conversations about how to navigate through some of the trickier sleepover scenarios that can arise. So, I thought we could use today’s post to share tips and advice with one another to ensure a happier day-after for parents and kids alike!  Read More

More Than A Mom

Thursday, September 12, 2013

By Guest Blogger Jessie Peele, author of Cupcakes and Running Shoes

Any woman who becomes a mom knows that it is all-consuming.

It’s impossible to even put into words.

And I used to get annoyed when people told me that – they’d say, “It’s a love like you’ve never imagined.” Yeah yeah, I get it – you love your kid like crazy… and while I would get slightly annoyed with the “just wait” comments, I honestly COULDN’T wait to be on that side of love.

And here I am.

And it’s amazing.

And they were right – it’s a love like I’ve never imagined. An all-consuming obsession… the kind of obsession that drives me to stare at my sweet girl all day long, and then stare at her pictures once she’s gone to bed. The kind of obsession that drove my hub to say, simply, “You’re obsessed.” And he didn’t mean it in a mean way, because he admitted that he, too, is obsessed. Read More

Should We Choose our Kids' Friends?

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

My mom always said you “lose” your child once they start school. You’re not always there to steer your child through life decisions after you kiss them goodbye and send them off. You hope they play with the kids you know who are nice, but we also know that’s not always the case.

This often makes me wonder if it’s a good idea to help choose your child’s friends? As adults we pick our own friends all the time. And our kids do too. But as parents, is it possible to pick and choose your kids’ friends? By doing so, could we help them navigate around the ones we think might cause hardship? Should we even try? And if so, are we just asking for trouble? Read More

What My Kids' Lunches Will Never Look Like

Thursday, September 05, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

We are two weeks into the school year and I have already had numerous friends telling me that they are worn out on the lunchbox packing duty. We know there are plenty of ways to make it easier like preparing the night before, preparing a week in advance, letting them buy their lunch at school, etc. But the bottom line is that I don't think anyone I know truly enjoys packing lunches for their kids.

So to make you feel a little better if you, too, are feeling like it is Groundhog Day every time you pack their lunches, I thought I would give you a glimpse into our family's lunch boxes. Read More

A Glimpse into the Life of a Single Parent

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

By Guest Blogger Suzy Fielders

Being a single parent is one of the hardest yet most gratifying things a person can do in life. This is best summed up in the simple statement; a single parent has to be both the mother and father. I can attest to this as I am a single parent myself of my six year old daughter Sarah. Just like with any other parent there has been laughter and tears, good and bad times, and everything in between, but the difference is it is doubled by two because of this dual role of being the only parent figure.

The most challenging thing about being a single parent is you have to make every decision on your own and are solely accountable for that decision. Couples have the opportunity to talk with each other about all parenting matters whether it is a medical issue, what school to send the child to or even the best rewards and punishments. Single parents do not have this. While they can discuss all of these items with family and friends when it comes down to it they ultimately have to face and decide everything for their child alone.  Read More

Fatherly Fridays ~ "Being Enough"

Friday, August 23, 2013

By Guest Blogger James Raper

Before reading, check out this video first. First, it’s just funny. Second, it just might be relevant to the rest of this post.

For my day job I’m a therapist at a university. That means that much of my time is spent working with college students who are seeking support/help/consultation for a wide range of issues – from a relationship break-up, to relatively severe mental health concerns, to everything in between. Our campus has a large portion of very high achieving students, and with high achievement also often comes perfectionism. For some of these students, getting a 93 on an Organic Chemistry exam truly feels like “failure” and is a sure sign that they will no longer be able to go to medical school (and if they don’t go to medical school, they are failures as people).  Read More

Fatherly Fridays ~ "Don't Stop Dreaming"

Friday, August 16, 2013

By Guest Blogger Busta Brown

I've noticed recently that my son's conversations have been very limited to sports, entertainment, and material things. Cameron and Corey are awesome sons and I wouldn't trade them for anything. I love them dudes, but like a lot of teens, their conversations are very limited to..."Lebron this," "Kobe that," "Lil Wayne's new song is not hot," "fancy SUV's that," "fancy cars this," "big houses that," "Did you see the latest funny youtube," etc.

They also tell me something they've heard without researching it for themselves and it misleads me and others. In most cases the stories were false, and that's not cool. I asked my sons from here on to always research anything they hear, write it down, and then share. Not gossip, but share good positive and uplifting conversations.
 Read More

Father Fridays ~ "The Tiny Terrorist and Toddling Dictator"

Friday, August 02, 2013

By Guest Blogger Bryan Timmons

You read that title right, our house is run by a tiny terrorist and a toddling dictator. And oddly enough, I kind of love it.

Avett (22 months) is a great kid and a wonderful big brother. Stone (6 weeks) is quickly adjusting to a somewhat structured life on the outside, but I keep it real around here and there aren't unicorn pellets in their diapers, and things aren't roses and rainbows ALL of the time.

Case in point... Read More

Road Rage

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

We have a running joke in our family. Whenever we go on trips with my husband, he insists on driving. But for some uncanny reason, whenever he's behind the wheel, all the crazy drivers come out, and he's constantly having to battle with people who "have NO IDEA how to drive!" What's really odd, though, is whenever I take the kids on a trip, I rarely encounter those same loony drivers. For me, it's like the roads open up, the sky becomes clear, and I am able to get through a trip without anyone seeming to run me off the road or aggravate me on purpose. Hmmm.

In fact, just yesterday I completed a 16-hour round-trip car ride with the kids -- sans the hubby - to and from Florida. This is about the third time I've done this trip solo with the kids, and it's always a surprisingly easy and smooth ride. Just four major interstates, literally less than 10 turns, and BOOM - we're there. Once again, the ride down was easy peasy as usual. The ride home - not so much. It seemed a couple of those crazies (who usually bother my husband) decided to take it up with me. Read More

Fatherly Fridays ~ "I've Bought 6 Wedding Dresses"

Friday, July 26, 2013

By Guest Blogger Teddy Burriss

I bought my first wedding dress in 1978. It is the most beautiful wedding dress I have ever seen. It was far more beautiful because my bride was wearing it during my first wedding. I still have this dress in my closet and periodically I open the case it's in just to see it.

I bought my next wedding dress in 2000. This dress was just as beautiful as my first one. I don't remember the conversations about this dress, just that we bought it. I shed a small tear or two and was a little choked up standing beside my oldest daughter who wore this dress as she married my first son-in-law. I love this dress as much as I love my first one. Read More

What's the Best Age to Have Kids?

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

Have you ever wondered what's the best age to start having kids? I recently entered a new decade in my life and I catch myself calculating how old (or young!) I will be when my children start high school, or graduate from college, possibly get married, or yikes - I become a grandmother!

I think there are a lot of pros and cons for having kids earlier - and - later in life.  Of course we can't always plan what age we will be when we have kids, but I can definitely see God's logic behind younger childbearing years. But I also think there are lots of perks to starting a family later on. For the sake of discussion, I'll share my thoughts if you'll share yours in the comments below. And tell us which team you play on - the "earlier in life" or the "later in life" crew! Read More

Fatherly Fridays ~ "Oh So Very Wrong"

Friday, July 19, 2013

By Guest Blogger Jon Lowder

The role of dads in modern America has shifted dramatically over the last couple of generations. When my parents were married in the early 60s the expectations for most couples were pretty simple: they’d get married not long after getting out of school , start popping kids out and the dad would work while the mom stayed home and ran the household. Then in the early 70s those folks started divorcing at an unheard of rate, the moms entered the workforce in droves and by the time their children started getting married in the 80s and 90s the expectations for moms and dads weren’t quite so clear. That change is reflected in recent polls that show dads are taking on a greater share of household duties and an increasing number of moms – roughly 40% - are the primary breadwinners in their households.

So yes, times have changed and dad’s role in the household has shifted, but what hasn’t changed is that when the chips are down, and a decision has to be made that affects the children, mom’s always right. Even when she’s wrong, she’s right. Whether it’s deciding which doctor to visit or which shirt should be worn to the school play, if mom and dad don’t agree you can bet your bottom dollar that the kid’s going to end up at mom’s doctor and wearing mom’s shirt. Read More

Whatcha Think ~ Breaking Up with the Pros

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

Most of us have certain professionals we turn to on a regular basis to help us with stay current with our health and well-being, as well as for other important areas in our life. And lots of times, we find these professionals through either our own diligent research or from referrals from friends, family and neighbors.

We put our faith in these professionals and we continue to see them, or call them, as often as we need to. But sometimes…and this is to be expected…we grow tired of them, or they no longer fit our needs, or we simply want to try someone with new ideas, perspectives or a way of doing business.

Yet, switching to a new pro can get awkward. Have you ever just wanted to “court" a different professional – maybe someone else in their office or place of business or someone new in town who you were curious about? Have you ever wanted to “break up” with your trusted pro – or want to see or call someone else - but then feel like you're "cheating" on them? Read More

How Old Is Too Old?

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

This blog originally ran a few years ago. We had an amazing response with comments from readers and thought it was time to run this again. For those who chimed in years ago, maybe your viewpoints have changed! And for those who are reading this for the first time, please comment on as many topics as possible and get the discussion rolling! ~Rachel

My first child was a boy, so since he was born, I have always taken him into the Ladies’ Restroom with me when we are out in public. He just turned six, and I guess I got so used to doing this that it never really crossed my mind that there would come a point when he would need to go into the Men’s Room alone. My family went out for dinner a few months ago, and when I got up to use the restroom my son said he had to go as well, so we trotted off together to the ladies room. When we got back my husband immediately said, “You can’t do that anymore! He is way too old to be in there with you!” For the first time I had to stop and think, “How old is too old?”  Read More

Fatherly Fridays ~ "Programmer Preschool"

Friday, July 05, 2013

By Guest Blogger Scott Rigdon

I find that, as a 40-something Gamer, parents’ eyes quickly glaze over when I start talking about my gaming prowess, or for that matter, the gaming accomplishments of my children. I’m here to tell you that if you choose your games wisely, they could school your children for a very bright future in technology. In fact, I’m a little disappointed that Little Big Planet 2 hasn’t made its way into STEM programs yet. Undoubtedly, it, or something like it, one day will.

It all started in 2009, when Santa brought us a Playstation 3. Any child (or adult of any age) who can hold a video game controller can quickly learn to play Little Big Planet. Santa brought us that game because it’s a fun, family-friendly game where up to 4 players can play cooperatively. You start in training levels, and work your way all the way through the story, at which point you are tossed into the world of ‘Create Mode’. This is where your child’s Programmer Preschooling begins.  Read More

Oh. Hi Summer. You're Back. (*heavy sarcasm*)

Saturday, June 29, 2013

By Guest Blogger Thea DeLoreto, author of the blog The Lint Trap

Ah, summer vacation. I see you are back, you Minx. I know you are all popular and everyone loves you. I get it. You are all hot and steamy and fun with your sunshine and your maxi dresses. But like every great super star...you have your faults. Like no school. And lots of sweating. And lots of hours of to fill with entertaining a two year old. You roll in and get everyone worked up into a lather and we are all excited for pool time and beach trips and tans. But then you stick around. And a few weeks in, we are all just sitting around, staring at our kids, remembering why we heart Winter so much.  Read More

Fatherly Fridays ~ "5 Parenting Tips from a Seasoned Dad"

Friday, June 28, 2013

By Guest Blogger Kim Williams

Would you like to know what your children will think about your parenting in 10 years? I know.

My wife and I have four children, three girls, one boy – two hers, two mine – all from previous marriages. They are all four healthy, employed and not living in our house. Yes, I am the most successful Dad on the planet. Last month, in the time between Mother’s day and Father’s Day (also known as the demilitarized parental zone), I wrote an email to the children and asked the question:

“What are 3 things you (or someone you know – wink, wink) wish your 'dad' had talked more about or helped you with? What in your growing up years would you wish more of from your dad? Oh, and I need this by Friday!”

Here are their responses, along with my commentary. Read More

Cheers to Dads!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

By Guest Blogger Jessie Peele, author of Cupcakes and Running Shoes

The other afternoon my husband and daughter were on the back porch playing while I got dinner ready in the kitchen. I heard Cameron giggling uncontrollably, and I smiled and chopped some vegetables and thought, “Ahhhh, perfection.” And as her giggling continued to travel even deeper into her belly, I decided to find out what was so funny.

I leaned over and peaked out the window and saw my husband teaching Cameron how to go down the slide headfirst into a homemade ball pit.

I took a deep breath, counted to ten, then asked him to come inside for a minute. I must have had “the look” on my face.

“What?!” he said, with the hint of a smile.

“Babe…” I said, while trying to project an are-you-SERIOUS look.

And in that moment I realized us Mamas and Dadas – well, we’re just different. Read More

The Group Gift Drama

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

With the end of the school year having just passed, I was reminded that this can be a HOT TOPIC! Group gifts can cause drama anywhere, but today I am going to use the example of teacher gifts.

Here is the scenario: Room Mom sends a note to all parents telling them that there will be a group gift purchased for the teacher at the end of the year. The room mom tells everyone that there is no pressure to contribute, but if you would like to contribute to the gift, please send in a check toward the purchase.

Sounds easy, right?  Read More


Wednesday, June 05, 2013

By Guest Blogger Jessie Peele, author of Cupcakes and Running Shoes


Raising a toddler is starting to feel like that 4th of July contest they used to do at my neighborhood swimming pool – the one where they grease a watermelon and toss it into the deep end, and the first person who can dive down, retrieve said watermelon, and successfully swim up to the surface and put it on the edge of the pool wins a pack of Now & Laters or something.

It’s hard. It’s entertaining. It’s frustrating.

Toddlers are magical, wild, curious little beings. Beings whose emotions turn on a dime. Beings who have more willpower than is humanly possible. Beings whose lives seem to be over if you put Cheerios in their snack cup instead of raisins. Beings who will all of a sudden scream with absolute, unexplained terror during bath time when, just 24 hours earlier, they splished and splashed to their heart’s content. Read More

20 Things Every Mom Should Know

Sunday, June 02, 2013

By Guest Blogger Charlotte Bowman with Muscogee Moms

Last year, Rachel and I met Charlotte Bowman of Muscogee Moms (in Georgia) at a Chick-fil-A sponsored blogger meet-and-greet, and since then, we’ve been following each others' sites. Today we are featuring a cute post from her blog that we know all moms can relate to. If you have friends in family near Columbus, GA, encourage them to log on and follow Muscogee Moms! ~ Katie

Most of parenting is learn-as-you-go, but there are some things every mom should know. Read on for some hilarious tips from Muscogee Mom's Facebook fans that will make your life as a parent a little bit easier. Read More

Peer Pressure

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

You know how we're always researching articles, blogs and how-to manuals to help us become the best parent we can be? Well guess what? I'm here to say we're all doing a darn good job...we just don't know it yet! I say this because I am that person who is constantly searching, "Googling," and asking TMoM readers and guest bloggers for their advice, perspective and guidance on some heavy parenting topics. But a little something happened last year that made me step back and say, "Whoa. I think we're going to be alright. At least for now."

The little something I'm referring to is peer pressure and my then-second-grade daughter. At the time, "peer pressure" wasn't even in my mom vocabulary. The thought of researching expert advice on that topic never crossed my mind. Peer pressure and my seven-year-old daughter? No way - that's not something I needed to worry about, right?  Read More

Now Serving Table 6

Sunday, May 26, 2013

By guest blogger Susan M.
There are things that you would think that might be the bane of my existence. Bats, perhaps. But I'll let you in on a little secret - the bane of my existence is dinner.

No really. It's dinner.

It's not so much the actual food of dinner that drives me crazy, nor, in all honestly, the family around the table part. Although, around the 40th "Why did the cow cross the road" joke, it comes pretty close. (For some inexplicable reason, this is what dinner winds up as at my house, and a refined sense of humor is clearly not in my children's genetic code.) Read More

What Are the Best Summer Jobs for Kids?

Friday, May 24, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

Short order cook. Monogrammed bracelet maker. Candy store operator. Homemade fudge shop cashier. Lifeguard. Beach badge checker. Busgirl. Entrée runner. Waitress.

Those were just a few of my summer “titles” growing up at the Jersey shore. No matter how silly the title or insignificant the job, I cherished them all the same. Every year I became obsessed with finding the coolest, most fun, best paying job a person my age could have. While my “careers” may have been short-lived, the lessons learned have stayed with me for years.

If you have a tween or teen looking for that perfect summer gig – or if your child just landed his dream summer stint – this post is for you. We’ve had a few readers ask for tips on finding summer jobs for teens and tweens. Where do you look? When do you start looking? Who is hiring? What are the best summer jobs for kids? What kinds of jobs should kids avoid? If you can help answer these questions, please leave a comment below. Read More

Your Parents Are Still Living: What You Can Do Today

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

In our lifetimes, we will all have different crosses to bear. The way we handle them and the way we survive those challenges will make a difference in our own lives and in the lives of others. It can make the cross-bearing event a nightmare or we can turn it into something positive.

One of the crosses I have carried in my life is losing my parents within three months of each other, when they were only 63 and 67. I have been skeptical to write too much about their passings, as I don't want to always seem morbid or a downer, but one of the ways I can work through my grief and help others is by sharing what I have learned.

Whether you have one parent still living, both parents, or your grandparents, I hope you can take some of my words to heart. Read More

What Parents of Daughters Want You to Teach Your Sons

Sunday, May 19, 2013

By Guest Blogger Lisa Witherspoon, author of the blog The Golden Spoons

I had a conversation once with some amazing women about how growing up - and, therefore, parenting - is different today from how it was when we were young. Kids are introduced to so many things earlier these days - things like alcohol and sex. Part of our conversation also included discussing some of the ways that raising boys is different from raising girls. 

With one mom/friend in particular, I was discussing the double standard that still exists regarding "intimate relations." Among boys, it is still an accomplishment; something to be proud of with few consequences. For girls though, it is the opposite. Promiscuous girls are insulted, disgraced and, often, the consequences can be life-altering - like teen pregnancy. She said she wanted to teach her sons differently - she wants them to understand that there is not honor in that kind of behavior - for boys or girls. I admire her tremendously for that. More importantly, as a mom with three daughters, I thank her for that so very, very much.  Read More

Never Say Never

Friday, May 17, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

When you were a new or expecting parent, did you ever say, "I will never do blah, blah, blah" ...and now look back on that comment and laugh? Are you like, "Yea, that was brilliant. What was I thinking?" Or did you actually have some smart parenting idea that got away from you - thanks to life being busy, parenting being stressful...and well..you just have other  things on your plate right now?

I'm sure just about every parent can think of at least one or two brilliant things they said they'd never do or swore they'd always do. And if you personally can't think of any, I'm sure you've overheard friends or relatives say some pretty lofty things!

Let's share these crazy ideas and comments with each other. I'll start with a couple of my own as well as comments I've overheard others say. I also reached out to some loyal TMoM readers to share their "nevers" with us as well. At the end of today's post, share yours! Read More

Check Your Biorhythms

Thursday, May 16, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

Have you ever had one of those days where you seem to drop everything you touch, trip on anything in sight, mess up any task you have been given, and just want to break down and cry for no reason? You may be going through some real issues, but it may just all be part of the cycle of life!

Back in high school, my Calculus teacher taught us about biorhythms and they still amaze me to this day. In no way do I use these to the point where they would conflict with religious beliefs or anything of that nature, but it sure does make me feel better when I seem to have had one of "those days." Read More

Whatcha Think: Tattoos

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

Growing up I was a bit of a rebel. So to make it this far in my life without ever getting "inked" is pretty surprising to me. There were definitely times I could have been talked into it. I remember seriously considering it one time in college. But for some reason, I never took the plunge. And I don't recall many of my friends going through with it either.

As I think back - on the years between college and kids - I don't think I knew one person who had a tattoo. Either I never paid attention, or tattoos were just not as prevalent then (mid-to-late '90s). Yet today, I feel I'm in the minority without a tattoo. I now know several friends who have them. Wherever I go, I bump into at least one other person with a tattoo. More than ever before, I see moms and dads (of all ages) with tattoos. And not just one tattoo...but arms, legs and torsos full of them.

Since I am definitely not in the "know" on tattoos, I thought it would be interesting to open this topic up for conversation. Whether you're a fan or a critic, or you fall somewhere in between, we'd love to get your opinion!  Read More

We Salute You, Moms!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

We salute you moms in the minivans
and those in the SUV's.
We salute those in the pick-up trucks
And those on the ATV's.

We honor the moms who work in an office
And the ones who stay in their homes.
We honor those who wait tables
And those who answer the phones.

We love the moms who wear diamonds
And the moms who have tattoos.
We love the moms who buy new clothes
And those who prefer them used. Read More

What’s Next After Your Child’s Graduation?

Saturday, May 11, 2013

By Guest Blogger, Donna Fiori

When I was first approached about writing a blog for moms of seniors in high school, I first thought of writing about the whole process of helping your student decide the best direction for them and all that is involved. After much thought, I decided to take a different approach and talk to you about what happens to us, the moms, when our children decide to leave the nest and move on to their next stage in life.

There are numerous resources available to the parents of high school seniors that will enable them to get on the right track for the proceeding years. However, one thing they don’t prepare us for is the day our children actually leave home. We all get that large lump in our throats just thinking about it, watching them walk across the stage on graduation day and then all the preparation for the move day in August. Read More

What Will Be Your Children's Best Memories?

Wednesday, May 08, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

I was fortunate enough to live a very happy childhood. I want to create the same atmosphere for my children and I know most of you probably have the same goal. You strive each day to be the best mom you can be and do your very best to create a memorable and happy childhood for your kids, but my message today is that the creation of this happy childhood may not be as difficult as it may seem.

When I look back on it, I don't think I would change a thing about my upbringing. I get a smile on my face when I think of some of my best memories. Of course we took many exciting trips to the beach, Disney World, and even Hawaii. I also had wonderful birthday parties, and got (mostly) everything on my list to Santa each year, but those aren't the memories that I cherish the most.  Read More

This Little Light of Mine

Sunday, April 28, 2013

By Kristen Bagwell, Triangle Moms on Main

I'm not much for watching the news. Like, ever. When I do, I usually think to myself "oh, right, they should have named this the Bad News" because every headliner is about something negative.

The past couple weeks have highlighted that truth times a gazillion, and ended with me quietly sobbing into my popcorn on Sunday night while I watched my daughter dance to a Fresh Beat Band Special. 

It makes me want to hide. For a really long time. Yet among the sadness, there was some good. I posted a quote on facebook about finding the helpers when things go awry (thanks Mr. Rogers), and slowly but surely those stories started to emerge. There was a man who helped a terrified marathoner calm down and get to safety, and in the midst of the chaos, asked her whether she'd finished the race. When she said no, he took the medal from his neck and put it around hers, and stayed with her until she'd been reunited with her people. How about the heroes who put themselves at risk to help those injured to safety? Or the countless residents of Boston who took dozens of strangers into their own homes to ensure they would be out of harm's way while the dust settled...for every story like this that we've heard, there must be five or ten that we haven't.  Read More

On Being a Mom

Monday, April 22, 2013

By Guest Blogger Jai Wallace Tracy

Sometimes I think Facebook is the worst thing to have happened to a mom. Well, Facebook and smart phones.

Think about it. Because of these two inventions, you can now get a look at the life of every mom you call "friend." AND it's all delivered instantly right to your phone. Now moms have a front-row seat to all the cookie-baking and paint projects and plenty of time to judge their own mothering skills against such. We see the handmade paper chains decorating the Christmas tree across town, and suddenly our own Target ornaments seem way too trite. The next thing you know, we're freaked out that our own kids are going to become resentful of the handmade-ornament kids, join a ornament-hating gang, rob a Hallmark store and end up in jail serving 5 to 10. So Target mom says to ornament mom, "Why can't you just take it down a notch????"

But it goes the other way, too. Ornament mom looks at Target mom with raised eyebrow and says, "Can't you up your game just a bit?" Read More

The Family Bathroom

Saturday, April 20, 2013

By Thea DeLoreto, author of The Lint Trap

How many bathrooms do you have? We have one. Uno. A single tinkletorium. We live in a cute little bungalow that was built in the twenties and apparently flappers and dandies and mobsters were not well versed in the art of hydration beyond their moonshine and therefore did very little of the weeing. I am sure it had nothing to do with how expensive toilets and bathtubs were. Because we choose to live in a house that we love, in a neighborhood we love, we also have to deal with a few ugly truths. I feel it is only right that I share so others will understand. With great crown molding comes great responsibility.

I have advice for all those families who have at least two or more members and are looking at a house with one bathroom. It is doable, but you gotta know what you are getting into. Don't shudder and stop here because you don't want to to know. You need to know. Please, you have to understand. Dear Lord...you must be prepared.  Read More

Whatcha Think ~ Kids on Leashes

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

Now here is a topic I'm torn on. I'm not sure if I'm in favor of this idea, totally appalled, or if I fall somewhere in between. Like me, I'm sure you've seen plenty of parents keeping their child close by using a child leash or a monkey harness or a kid keeper - or whatever you may call it. I recently took a trip where I traveled through a couple of airports and stayed at a busy resort hotel. It seemed every time I turned around I saw a child tethered to one of these.

I completely get the concept. I remember when my kids were toddlers and I could barely get them to sit still in a stroller for longer than 10 minutes. Hustling young kids like this through busy airports, hotels, parks, malls and other crowded areas can be a nightmare. Even today I get paranoid taking my nine-year-old and six-year-old into congested areas without them holding my hand or me keeping a constant eye on their every move. But I've never considered using a leash. Read More

Is Cheating a Deal-Breaker?

Monday, April 15, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

How many times have you heard this:

"If my spouse EVER cheated on me, I would be gone in a millisecond."

Have you ever said those words yourself? Now the big question - have you ever had to take back those words?

This is a heavy topic, but one I wanted to talk about today because more and more we are hearing about infidelity in our circles of friends, and for some of you maybe even in your own household. Sometimes the man is the cheater, sometimes the woman, or sometimes both. If you are the one contemplating an affair, read this first. It is a powerful blog we ran last year that I think will help give some insight.  Read More

The SAHM: A Dying Breed?

Wednesday, April 03, 2013

By Allison Carter of Triangle Moms on Main

I am a stay-at-home mom ("SAHM") to 2 boys, and I love what I do. I worked professionally for years and loved my job. But it was on a dead-end track so when we found out we were pregnant with our first son, my husband and I decided it made sense for me to stay at home for awhile. We would save costs on daycare, I could keep teaching exercise for a little income, and in the meantime I could take some enrichment classes or otherwise reassess and change my career path trajectory.

Yet there are many days where I think about work, and miss it. A college-educated woman who is ambitious occasionally needs more than Thomas the Tank Engine to keep her fulfilled. This is an issue I love to discuss with my other SAHM friends. Yet I have to tell you, there aren't many these days. Couple that with the observation that on my recent trip (which I talked about yesterday) I realized that out of ALL the friends I saw I was the only SAHM in the whole bunch. I can't help but wonder: is the SAHM a dying breed? Read More

Tales from a Boob

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

When it came to breastfeeding, I was a total boob. While I nursed my first born three months and then my son five months, I am amazed I even lasted that long. They say it’s the most beautiful gift a mother can give to a child, and believe me I tried! Some may say I did a great job, and some may say I gave up too easily. Just like some people say breastfeeding is extremely difficult, others say it’s natural, effortless and much simpler than bottle feeding. Well, I experienced sentiments on both sides of the aisle, and as a result, I was never fully into the game nor was I completely resigned.

Breastfeeding is a huge task and a major lifestyle change, much like a nine-month pregnancy. And like pregnancies, every woman has different experiences. Today I share my thoughts and trials with breastfeeding and would love for you to share yours. Read More

The Perfect Mom

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

A few years ago I was having one of those days/weeks/months where I felt like I was failing as a mom, failing as a wife, failing as a friend, failing as a daughter, failing as a business person, and so on. I just felt like I couldn't juggle everything. I wasn't doing anything to the best of my ability because I was trying to do it all. It seems like all moms struggle on a daily basis with trying to be "the perfect mom."

I wrote a blog titled Your Perfect Friend last year in hopes of giving readers the satisfaction of knowing that most moms who may come across as your idea of "perfect" don't always have it all together. I thought of another story that I thought I would share today to help those of you who may also be struggling. Read More

I Always Feel Like ... Somebody's Watchin' Me

Thursday, March 14, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

Do you own a video-monitor? These are usually called "infant video monitors" but after our Triad Moms on Main team meeting the other month I came to find out that they should be called "child monitors!" One of my team members even made fun of herself and said that her mother often asks her, "Are you planning to watch these kids on a video until they head off to college?"

I personally never owned one of these devices. My children are nine and seven years old, so when they were born I think these monitors were slowly coming onto the scene. Knowing my personality, this would have been a disaster. I knew I didn't need anything that I would be carrying around with me all hours of the day, turning on and off and checking to see if my baby was moving or not moving.  Read More

Have You Ever Been Caught in the Act?

Monday, March 11, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

Lord. I have some stories to share today that will make your cheeks burn from blushing. I’m talking about getting caught in the “act” - whether it’s happened to you as a parent or - gasp! - you catching your own parents woo hooing!

A group of us were giggling over such stories we heard from others, and it made us wonder if this happens often. Like this one a friend shared: She knows of a mom who decided to have a little Saturday morning romp in the hay with her husband. When they were done, the mom got up to use the bathroom and then heard her son (8 years old) crying, and saw him crawl out from under the bed. Evidently he and his siblings had been playing Hide ‘n Go Seek, and once he was in his spot and figured out that something was going on above him, he was too scared to come out! Needless to say, they had the birds and bees talk that day!

Keep reading because I have more awkward stories to share. And if you’re brave, we’d love for you to chime in. Of course you can comment anonymously (be sure not to fill in your email address or name when commenting). Or you can be brazen like me and share your friends’ stories on their behalf!  Read More

Momma Said Knock You Out

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

Would you ever give your child permission to use violence? Would you ever tell your kid that it was OK to punch or push another kid? Of course most of us would automatically answer no. Why would we ever want to encourage violence? Especially when one of the top concerns in our minds is bullying, right? But, before you say no, let me give you an example.

I witnessed this event a few months ago when visiting a friend. We were sitting in her sun-room with a view of the backyard. A group of kids from the neighborhood were all playing together outside. All seemed to be going well, but then we noticed something wasn't quite right between her son and another neighborhood boy (both age 9) ... Read More

Fight Nice Like Ray and Debra

Monday, February 25, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

Ah, love quarrels. You know how it goes. Sometimes you and your spouse (or significant other) know each other so well – and are aware of every little button available to push – that you can actually bicker – and stand your ground - without uttering a single word. Quarrels like these can go on for days – or longer – over the silliest of things. And lots of times no one knows you and yours are at odds over anything because life is just peachy otherwise.

I was inspired to write about this topic after reading Allison’s post “The Silent Fight” on Triangle Moms on Main. Her story cracked me up and reminded me of one of my favorite episodes from Everyone Loves Raymond where Ray and Debra were silently fighting over a suitcase on the stairs. Do you remember that episode? Well, keep reading because I have some humorous real-life “silent fighting” stories of my own to share, and I’m hoping you do too!  Read More

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff

Sunday, February 24, 2013

By Kristen Bagwell with Triangle Moms on Main

Kristen posted this story on Triangle Moms on Main after finding it on Facebook. She admits she's always a sucker for a sweet story, and hopes you enjoy it as much as she did!

A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him. When the class began, he wordlessly picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls. He then asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was. Read More

What Do You Pay Your Babysitter?

Friday, February 22, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

We haven't touched on this topic recently so I thought it would be a good time to poll our readers and see what the going rate is for sitters! My husband and I love our date nights and know they are sometimes necessary in order to get quality adult time, but the cost of a night out can add up quickly!  There are also those of us who also need sitters or nannies during the day in order to work, run errands, hit the doctor, etc.  I think it is important to talk to other moms about what you pay your sitters, so that you are not the mom who is underpaying or even overpaying!

Here are some rates below that I came up with when asking some friends what they pay. I think these rates are very fair. For me personally, I also base payment on whether or not the sitter can drive. If I have to pick up the babysitter and/or take her home, I usually pay a little less than if she can drive herself. Read More

Bad Parenting Habits

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

By Guest Blogger Lisa Witherspoon

We all have bad habits even if we don't like to admit it. Do you bite your nails? Drink straight from the milk carton? Text while driving??

Well, we sometimes fall into bad parenting habits, too. And, the thing about habits is that, once you start them, it can be very hard to break them. We don't mean to form these habits. Many times they "just happen" or it is something we do out of momentary necessity. If you are like me, they may be things you said you would do "Just this once," but, then, it happened again and again.

Most of the time, we don't like to admit we have these habits because we think it makes us bad parents (or, at least, we think that we will be judged by others as bad parents). However, this prevents us from getting potentially helpful advice from others and it makes us feel that we are the only ones experiencing these frustrations (which make it more frustrating!). The truth is, we all have a bad parenting habit or two and I think we need to be more open about it. It will make all of us feel better and, hopefully, lead to some useful advice. I say, let's share.  Read More

Whatcha Think: Asking for Monetary Gifts at Parties

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

Kid's birthday parties sure can raise blood-pressure for moms, and it is not because of planning stress. Moms get fired up about their opinions! Opinions on everything from goodie bags, to venues, to gifts.

A growing trend we have recently heard about is for the hosts to tell their birthday party attendees exactly what to bring as a gift. We've run this blog previously about bringing gifts to donate to non-profits. We've also discussed children donating gifts to Foster children in this blog. Most of our readers agreed that these were good ideas to incorporate when you have a child who already has a plethora of toys and is not in need of anything else to clutter up their playroom. It was also discussed as a good way to show altruism to your children if you are not in the habit of giving to non-profits at other times throughout the year. Read More

Would You Brave it Alone?

Friday, January 25, 2013

By Katie Moosbrugger

Many moons ago (at least it feels that way) before I was married with kids, my husband (then boyfriend) and I - and another couple - rented a cabin for the weekend. And as typical mid-twenty-somethings would do, we were having fun, carrying on and cutting loose. At some point - and I don't remember why - we had to knock on the door of the cabin next to us. To my surprise a woman (probably in her mid-to-late 40s) answered to help with whatever we needed. I remember peeking in her cabin and seeing a blanket on the couch (where she obviously got up from), and next to the couch was a book and a glass of wine. It was apparent she was staying there alone. It was late in the evening and she was by herself. My first thoughts were, "How strange...Why would she want to hang out by herself in this cabin? She must be so bored...Where is her husband and where are her kids...I feel so bad for her!"

Of course, just I shouldn't have assumed she had a husband or kids.  Of course I shouldn't have assumed she was alone because of a sad reason. Yet at that time, I couldn't help thinking "How odd!"

But that was 12 years ago. That was nine pre-maternal years ago. If I knocked on that door today, I wouldn't find it odd at all. In fact, I'd find it pretty terrific.  Read More

You Know You Are Getting Old When ...

Monday, January 14, 2013

By Rachel Hoeing

2013 ... the year I turn 40. Gulp. In my mind I am still in my twenties. 40-year-olds are my parents' friends, not my friends, right? 40-year-olds are ... well ... old. And I am almost there.

I have tried to deny that my thirties are coming to an end, but each and every day I am somehow reminded that I truly am getting older. Don't get me wrong - there is little about my life that I would change & I am happy right where I am, but I find myself shaking my head in pity when I catch myself doing certain things. Whether you are in your 20's, 40's or 60's, I bet you can empathize with a few of my antics.

Let's see if you can relate. You Know You Are Getting Old When ... Read More

The Days are Long, but the Years are Short!

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

By Shannon Burghart

Happy New Year to all! I am so excited right now that I have to write about it! My oldest niece just found out she got into her top pick college! I’m so stinking proud I want to shout it to everyone! But this pride is mixed with a whole bunch of awe over how quickly she’s grown up. How can it possibly be that MY baby is going to college? Yes, yes, I know she’s not really mine, but since I was in college when she was born, I had many years with her before I had kids, so she’s always felt a bit like mine!

As she’s been going through the visits and application and waiting, I have been thinking about my sister going through all of the “lasts” this year…last first day of school photo, last homecoming, last summer all together, etc. It has made me realize in a very concrete way how quickly they grow up. Read More

I'm Not Ready for Endless Love

Friday, December 28, 2012

By Guest Blogger Kristen Daukas, author of the blog Four Hens and a Rooster

I was at my desk the other day, listening to my 80′s playlist on iTunes and grinding through my to-do list. Suddenly, the song Endless Love came on and I was whisked away to my teen days. Remembering how all of us girls would sing the bejeesus out of that song – just waiting for the day that we would find OUR endless love and he, of course would sing with us in perfect harmony just like Lionel and Diana did.

Once the mist had cleared from my eyes, I tried to remember exactly what year the song came out.. I had to be 16 or 17, I thought.

Nope. It was 1981 and I was 13. Read More

'Twas the Night Before Christmas (Ode to Moms)

Monday, December 24, 2012

Author Unknown

It was the night before Christmas, when all thru the abode
Only one creature was stirring, and she was cleaning the commode.
The children were finally sleeping, all snug in their beds,
While visions of Nintendo 64 and Barbie, flipped through their heads.

The dad was snoring in front of the TV,
With a half-constructed bicycle on his knee.
So only the mom heard the reindeer hooves clatter,
Which made her sigh, "Now what's the matter?" Read More

All *I* Want For Christmas

Friday, December 21, 2012

By Allison Carter, Triangle Moms on Main

Dear Santa: As a mom I spend a lot of time during Christmas focused on others, primarily my kids. Someone recently asked me what I want for Christmas and I realized I forgot to get my list in. Here it is:

- I want to sleep in (in my own bed, without screaming in the background) for as long as I want. Then I want to lie in my bed and not move for as long as I want.

- I want to watch an entire football game, start to finish, uninterrupted, on a Sunday afternoon. Read More

Ever Wonder When It's the Best Time?

Thursday, December 20, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

My husband came home with a book that I literally devoured in minutes. It’s called Buy Ketchup In May and Fly at Noon: A Guide to the Best Time to Buy This, Do That and Go There by Mark Di Vincenzo. If you’ve ever wondered about the best day of the week to buy groceries, go out to dinner or put your house on the market - or best time of day to pump gas, take a pregnancy test or eat carbohydrates – you’ll find it in this book. It’s chock full of life’s random events that will help you “get more for your money, maximize your time, take better care of your health and be savvier about your career – all by doing certain things at the right time.” And every tip is backed by research and interviews done with experts – or by best-time conclusions.

This would make a great last-minute holiday gift! Without giving away the book, here’s a sneak peak of some items straight from the book: Read More

Do You Deserve a Push Present?

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

All this talk of "presents" reminded me of a topic I wrote about a few years ago - "Push Presents." I figured I would bring up the topic again because it always creates a great discussion. Please join in by commenting below and let us know your thoughts ...

A few weeks ago, a group of my girlfriends got into a discussion about "push presents." If you have never heard this term before, it refers to a gift given to a mom (usually by the dad) after giving birth to a child. These presents are traditionally jewelry or a trip. Read More

Gifts That Make Memories

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

By Guest Blogger Cristin Whiting

Recently I was reminded that it is the simple things that count…

When it comes to giving and receiving gifts, I have always been partial to the gifts that make memories over those that are held in the hand. My kids have birthdays that are in close proximity and so every year we plan some kind of “experience” or trip to commemorate their entry into our family. We have taken exciting vacations to NYC, to Disney World, and for more times that I can even recount, to the kid-favorite, Great Wolfe Lodge. This year though, we opted for something simpler.

A couple of Saturdays ago, we piled into our car with our dog, Molly and our pet frog Skittles and drove to Cloud 9 Farm in the Great Smokey Mountains. Cloud 9 Farm is a beautiful place tucked off the beaten path in Fletcher, NC. In our less than twenty-four hour stay, my kids toured the farm, fed chickens and collect their eggs. They fed and cared for “Hamburger”, “Sir Loin”, and “Stew”, the three cows that were being raised for food. They harvested vegetables from the farm’s garden and together we climbed to the top of a barn piled high with hay bales. We built a bon fire, road bikes, and ate great meals together. Read More

The Amazing Sense of Smell

Friday, December 14, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

I picked up my daughter’s Strawberry Shortcake doll the other day and it immediately took me back to my childhood. That strawberry smell (that actually smells nothing like strawberries) is embedded in my brain as a reminder of childhood happiness.

It is amazing how a simple smell can transport you to specific time and place and can quickly give you that warm feeling of comfort. I think it is so important to teach our kids how to literally “stop and smell the roses!” My mom always picked Honeysuckle with us and let us taste it. Even to this day as I am walking past a Honeysuckle bush, it reminds me of my childhood and brings a smile to my face.

The other day I picked up my kids from a birthday party at a gymnasium, and as soon as I opened the door I was taken back to my days as a baton twirler. (Don’t laugh at me for being a baton twirler!) There is a distinct smell to those dance studios and gyms, and I told my kids to stop and smell. Of course they thought I was weirdo and my daughter proclaimed that it was stinky, but they’ll see what I’m talking about one day! Read More

5 Reasons We Do Not Have an Elf on the Shelf

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

By Guest Blogger Lisa Witherspoon

The other week, the TMoM ladies posted a question on Facebook asking  if moms participated in the Elf on the Shelf tradition and if so, when their Elf arrived and what his name was. It got me thinking that I would really like to share my perspective on this topic, so I jotted down my thoughts and submitted my blog below. I hesitated to post this one for  fear that it would offend others and I also did not want readers to think this was the opinion of the TMoM team. Rachel & Katie assured me that one of the things they like best about running this website is being able to share viewpoints of many, even though sometimes it is completely opposite from their own beliefs. I am sure that I will receive some not so nice comments, but again, I do not mean this as an insult to anyone who has an elf and loves the elf. If it works for your family, that is your decision and I completely respect it. I am not judging; I am simply expressing my point of view.

It's that time of year again - everyone is posting pictures of their Elf's creative adventures. Not at our house - We do not have an elf. Why have I deprived my children of this super fun tradition you might ask- let me explain. Read More

Whatcha Think ~ Birthday Presents

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

The other day, a few members from the TMoM team were chatting about birthday parties. The conversation then turned into a lively debate about all things related to birthday presents. "How much do we spend on gifts?"... "Do we spend more on gifts for friends vs classmates?"... "What about gifts for multiples?"...etc, etc. Without disclosing our thoughts, we thought it would be fun to involve our readers and ask what you think!

Below are the questions that came up in our chat. Pretend you were sitting at our table. How would you answer these questions? Do you have other burning inquiries on this subject? Jump in, join our discussion, and add your own questions as well! Read More

Why My Toenails Are Blue

Friday, December 07, 2012

By Guest Blogger Donna Small

I love my children desperately. There are, however, days that I don’t like them very much. And while I feel confident anyone who has children understands and can empathize feeling that way, it may require a certain amount of explanation.

My eldest daughter is twelve years old. It’s that glorious, hormone-laced period known to most of us as the “tween” years. For parents, the ups and downs we experience during this time rival most of the roller coasters at Carowinds. The unfortunate part of this is that it’s even more of a roller coaster ride for the child who is going through it; the rest of the family it simply sucked in by the sheer force of it.

When my daughter is her normal, sweet self, I’m still the greatest thing my daughter has ever experienced. She will come to me for advice because I’m still smart and she will hug me because I’m still loved. Occasionally, I’ve even been able to get a chuckle out of her.  Read More

Gently Letting Go: Julia Turns 10

Sunday, November 25, 2012

By Guest Blogger Cristin Whiting

Today I spent the afternoon with my daughter, the last afternoon in her single digit years. Tomorrow she turns ten.

She came home early from school today. She said she wasn’t feeling well. Sometimes with Julia stomachaches and headaches translate into needing some quiet time at home to regroup. No matter the case, I honor the request because she is not one to abuse the privilege of an afternoon home with mom. So I sit with her as she soaks in the tub with bubbles piled up to her chin. We tell our favorite stories about when she was little and laugh at the punch lines we already know so well.

My mind takes a serious turn as I’m aware that this is one of those moments that marks a milestone in her life.

I asked her, “What do you think it will be like when you turn ten?” Read More

Why I Love Online Grocery Shopping

Saturday, November 24, 2012

By Guest Blogger Lisa Witherspoon, author of www.thegoldenspoons.blogspot.com

Have any of you ever tried online grocery shopping?? I started doing it just over five years ago when I was pregnant with my daughter, Emily. I had some monster varicose veins that made walking around the grocery store physically painful. At a friend's suggestion, I hesitantly gave it a try and it was FABULOUS!!!

Basically, you go online and order your groceries. Then, you specify a time for pick up, giving at least four hours notice. At the requested time, you pull up to the drive through lane, use the call box to tell them you are there, and then the magic happens. Someone from the store will bring out your groceries - already pulled from the shelves, already bagged. You just hand them a check or credit card and they load the groceries in the car for you. You never have to go in the store or even get out of your car! You can order them from your couch at midnight if that's what fits your schedule. Instead of spending an hour walking around the store, you spend fifteen minutes (tops) in the parking lot. It is seriously the best invention for busy families since the creation of sliced bread or station wagons. Read More

New Mom Live & Learns

Friday, November 16, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

In just eight short years of parenting, I can’t believe I find myself thinking, “Wow, I wish I was better at that,” or “If only I had known to do that.” You might say it’s not too late – or it’s never too late - to make changes that my young children can still appreciate. But we all know how fast kids grow, learn and transform. Before my kids were born I wish I was given a "new mom handbook" that offered all things to do and not to do before the years slip away. But don't we all wish this?

With this in mind, I recently jotted down a few things I wish I did - and a few things I'm so glad I did - in my first few years as a mom. I’m sure I’m not alone in my thinking, and thought this could be a great place to swap "live and learn" lessons for other new and expecting moms. Take a read of a few of my regrets and my gloats, and add yours at the bottom of this post!  Read More

When Pinterest Makes Me Roll My Eyes

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

Pinterest is a brilliant concept and I do enjoy scrolling through ideas every so often. Evidently, so do over 100 million other people on any given month. We even have our own Pinterest page for our website, so I am not slamming Pinterest by any means, but merely poking fun at some of the items that I often come across and think, "Are you kidding me?"

In case you aren't familiar with the concept of this Social Media phenomenon, Pinterest is kind of virtual bulletin board where you can pin ideas instead of writing them down or saving into folders in your email.

All in good fun, I've shared some of the pins I've come across and smirked. I've included my own commentary below each pin in bold. Enjoy! Read More

Working Moms: Do You Flex?

Saturday, November 03, 2012

By Guest Blogger Elizabeth Smith

Working Mother magazine recently came out with their list of the 100 Best Companies. The selections were made based upon the following factors, Parental Leave, Child Care, Flexibility, Health & Wellness and Advancement. Two of the main factors under flexibility were the option to tele-commute and the ability to work a flexible schedule. Among the working mothers I know the ability to work flex time is almost equal in importance to salary. To be a successful employee and a successful mother you have to feel that you are doing a good job in both roles. Flex time greatly increases your odds of accomplishing both. Read More

When Is It OK to Skip School?

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

Should you let your child skip school to head to the beach? How about a week at Disney? What about just a Friday here or there to go out of town with some friends? Or what about skipping school to visit the annual local fair? How about skipping to attend a sporting event?

Let's rule out sickness and funerals and focus on the optional reasons you may let your children miss school. I would love to hear your opinions on this matter today. Obviously a big factor in these decisions will be the ages of your children, so be sure to weigh in on that as well.

Prior to starting this website, I was an Elementary School teacher and taught grades 1st, 3rd and 5th. I'd love to share some thoughts from my personal point of view as a teacher and then as a parent, just to get the conversation started.  Read More

Do I Play With My Kids Enough?

Saturday, October 27, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

I will never forget the words one mom said to me when my first born was just six months old. She told me she was “too busy to play with her kids.” At the time she was a stay-at-home mom and her children were in elementary school full-time. She did not have any work or volunteer obligations. I'm not positive, but I'm pretty sure she also had a hired maid, a husband who helped with dinner preparations and a laundry list of babysitters she used non-stop. All that, but she was still too busy, she said.

As a new mom, those words hit me like a ton of bricks. I remember being so angry and thinking (and later wished I had said), “Why did you even bother to have children?” Who knows – maybe she was exaggerating or didn’t realize what she was saying. Regardless, those words from her still haunt me. And after eight years of being a mom, I am still trying to put those words into perspective. Read More

Wear Your Mom Gear with Pride

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

My daughter got one of those wooden bead craft kits as a gift and went crazy making necklaces and bracelets. She crafted this one pictured and wrapped it for me as a gift. I opened it with excitement and immediately put it around my neck. I did the usual "Oh, it's so pretty" remarks and gave her many hugs and kisses of thanks.

We all love when our kids take the time to think of us and do something special for us, right?

But then it came time to go out that evening and I promptly changed clothes while also changing my necklace. When we were out that night Anna noticed my necklace and asked where my new one was that she had made me. I could see the disappointment in her eyes and felt disappointed in myself as well. I told her I was sorry that I did not wear it, but that it didn't match very well with my outfit. Lame excuse and I could tell my sweet daughter was heart broken. Read More

Colin's Questions

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

By Guest Blogger, Cristin Whiting

My son, Colin, is seven and for a long time I believed that what he thought about could be boiled down into three main categories: (1) Beyblades—a very popular game played by boys his age, similar to tops (2) His best friend, Chase and (3) Food. 

Colin stands next to me in the kitchen several times a day filling a plate with food trying to fill that hollow leg of his.  He chatters excitedly with his face aglow, explaining to me in great detail about which beys are best used for offensive attacks and which are best for defense.  Which beys he has custom made and how they have performed against those of his best friend. 

I try to hang on to what he is saying.  It is clearly so important to him.  But I don’t.  My mind is cluttered with the to-dos of managing the business of our family and getting ready for the next workday.  I phase in and out of what he is saying.  I try to ask him a couple of questions to plug back into the conversation but the thread of it is too far-gone. Read More

The {What} Queen?

Thursday, October 18, 2012

By Kristen Bagwell of Triangle Moms on Main

For those of you who don't want to talk about anything below the belt, now is the time to divert your eyes. This is one of those topics that I was thinking about in the car yesterday and, well, here we are.

I have a seven-month old baby at home. While I was expecting, there were several occasions where I met up with friends that I have not seen in a few years. "Oh, you look great, how far along are you?" quickly turned to "You know, you really do need to do those kegel exercises and also begin yoga now." Somehow, we got into a discussion about coughing, jumping on a trampoline, and many other things that would become taboo with the birth of my second child. "Things don't bounce back as quickly after #2 so be aware of that...and we mean your weight, your hormones, and your hoo hoo." (To be fair, these are my sorority sisters...but REALLY??)  Read More

To Reconnect, Try Disconnecting

Saturday, October 13, 2012

By Guest Blogger from Triangle Moms on Main

The other night, my husband texted me from upstairs. "I'm going to bed," read his text. I replied "ok. are you going to kiss the phone goodnight?" I cannot explain how annoyed I was - could he not even come downstairs to say good night? Then I looked around and felt a little like a hypocrite. My phone was to my right, my tablet to my left, and my computer was in front of me. Not exactly the best example, I guess.

My point is this: if family togetherness in your house looks like the picture above, maybe it's time to make a change. It's ironic, but I decided that the only way we can reconnect as a family is to disconnect our electronic devices. Read More

Attachment vs. Detachment Parenting: Which One is for You?

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

By TMoM team member Dani Luft

Recently on Facebook, a few of my friends posted this article on Detachment parenting and it got me thinking about attachment vs. detachment parenting: Which method do I most associate myself with doing and has that way been successful for my children and me?

The term “attachment parenting” was coined by pediatrician William Sears, a name known by all of us who are avid readers of parenting books. According to Wikipedia, “Principles of attachment parenting aim to increase development of a child's secure attachment and decrease insecure attachment. . . . many attachment parents also choose to live a natural family living (NFL) lifestyle, such as natural childbirth, home birth, stay-at-home parenting, co-sleeping, breastfeeding, babyweaning, homeschooling, unschooling, the anti-circumcision movement, natural health, cooperative movements, paleolithic lifestyle, naturism and support of organic and local foods. ” Mayim Bialik, who played Blossom on the hit show “Blossom,” is famous for her outspokeness towards the benefits of practicing attachment parenting. Read More

E-Reader, Book or Tablet. What’s Your Read?

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

I love books. Real books. Books with pages I can smell (and I do sniff them often). I love holding books; flipping through books; browsing new and used bookstores; receiving books as gifts; giving books as gifts; sharing and borrowing books; selling, trading and swapping books; and lining my bookshelves with none other than…books!

So when my husband hinted last year that he wanted to try an e-reader, I cringed. He and I swap books all the time and I wasn’t ready to give that up. But it made sense (and dollar savings) for him to have one, and now he’s hooked. I, on the other hand, am still having a hard time accepting such a switch. What about you? Read More

Your Perfect Friend

Thursday, September 20, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

I have an out-of-town friend who has been going through a really tough time lately. Her biggest struggle is always trying to put on a happy face for her children and her new group of friends. When I asked her why she couldn't be herself around these new girlfriends and confide in them, she smirked, "Oh you mean the perfect girls? My friends with the perfect hair and the perfect clothes? The ones with the amazing husbands and all-star kids? The ones whose biggest problems are where they will go on vacation next summer? No, I would never let them know how bad my life is right now!"

For those of you who may have found yourselves in a similar situation, I've got a little secret. These women are not perfect either. Nine times out of ten I can guarantee you that they all have issues, struggles and problems of their own. Read More

Whatcha Think ~ Sharing the Goods

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

You might think today's questions are a little far fetched. A few months ago I would have thought the same thing. I used to think these kinds of things only happened on Lifetime movies. And then while having random discussions with friends, I learned it happens more than I thought. My friends have friends who have experienced at least one (if not more) of the situations addressed below. Right here in the Triad. Women our own age. From all different backgrounds. For all different reasons. Some who are moms with their own families; others who are single and never married.

So here are the questions that prompted my random discussions with friends... Read More

Balancing Act

Saturday, September 15, 2012

By Guest Blogger, Heather Keenan

Recently I felt that I was treating my beautiful, spirited second born as a job rather than the awesome individual that she is. It caused me to be grumpy and feel as though she was extremely difficult. I decided I needed to look at things through different specs. Being a mother, regardless of the number of children you have, is a very delicate balancing act. I just needed to learn how to juggle.

I have two amazing daughters. A three year old and a one year old. They are the definition of "chalk and cheese", which took quite some time for me to get used to. I naively assumed that my second child would very closely resemble my first as far as personality, temper and cautiousness go. I could not have been more wrong. It was, in a sense, like starting from scratch. Read More

Do the Monsters Visit Your House Too?

Thursday, September 13, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

They’re baaack! Those pesky visitors that always over-stay their welcome arrived at our house again.  They were here several months ago but I thought we were able to get rid of them for good. They not only keep us up all night but they also rack up our electric bill. If you ever drive past our house in the wee hours you’d think we were nuts. Our entire front hall and upstairs is illuminated with lights from the hallway, the kids’ bathroom and my son’s closet.

Oh, I’m not talking about in-laws (ha, ha, ha). I’m talking about my son’s imaginary closet monsters.  Read More

Whatcha Think: Home Alone!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

Now I am not talking about leaving your seven-year-old home alone while you fly out of town ... but at what age do you allow your children to stay home by themselves for a few hours?

What about leaving your 10 year old at home while you take a quick trip to the grocery store? Or leaving your 12 and 8-year-olds home while you go to a doctor's appointment? Will you let your tween stay alone with a younger sibling while you and your spouse have a date night?

Weigh in by commenting below! There are many different factors to this question. All answers will probably depend on your child's maturity level, whether or not there is a younger sibling, where the parent will be during this time, or maybe you even take your child's gender into account. Read More

Being a New Mom is Hard…Why Don’t We Talk about It?

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

By TMoM Team Member Shannon Burghart

A few days ago a mom of three with a newborn came up to me looking really wonderful and I asked her how she was doing. She put on a big smile and said, “Oh, great, thanks.” But, I saw the look in her eyes. So, I asked her some more and the more we talked she finally broke down and told me that she felt like she was losing her mind. The baby wasn’t sleeping, she wasn’t sleeping, she hated her husband, and she felt like she had no control over anything. Then she instantly started saying how guilty she felt for having any of these feelings. She knew she was so lucky to have healthy children and her husband was so great. She kept asking what was wrong with her that she was crying all the time and being so unappreciative of all of her blessings.

So, I told her, she was sleep deprived, she was hormonal and she was doing the hardest thing in the world--all in a society that talks about how beautiful motherhood is! Now, don’t get me wrong, motherhood is beautiful, fabulous and wonderful! I love my kids and wouldn’t trade them for anything. But that doesn’t mean that I love every minute of being a mom and it doesn’t mean that being a new mom is fun or easy or that every mom feels that new mom glow every minute of every day, if at all. So, I’ve made it my mission to bring light to the subject to make sure that every new mom knows she’s not alone. Read More

When Is the Best Time of Year to Have a Baby?

Sunday, September 02, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

Both of my children have June birthdays. Their birthdays are just a few days apart, and my husband and I both have birthdays in August, so our summers have always been a lot of fun. It got me thinking about what times of the year are the best times to give birth.

In a perfect world, we’d count back nine to ten months from the month we’d like to give birth, and try to conceive somewhere in that area. But in the real world with miscarriages, infertility, and just bad luck, unfortunately we know that cannot always happen so easily.  Read More

The Mountains or the Beach?

Saturday, September 01, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

Let's daydream a little. If you had the opportunity to own a vacation home, where would you choose? Would you hightail it to a mountain chalet or lay low at a beach bungalow?

If you asked me this question last spring I would have quickly answered, "The beach!" But with summer behind us - and after hearing countless vacation stories from friends' mountain and beach trips – I'm beginning to wonder which makes for a better family vacation. Read More

What Makes You Happy?

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

Out of the blue my son asked me, "Mom, what makes you laugh?"
"I don't know. Why?" I asked.
"Because I haven't seen you laugh in a really long time."

I sat in silence. This hit me like a ton of bricks. Was he right? Had I really not laughed in a long time? This past year was a rough one for me, but in the midst of my anger, sadness, and anxiety, had I really not taken the time to laugh?

My son's comment reminded me that although life gets tough, we need to remember to do things that make us happy. In the grand scheme of things my problems are minimal and although I realize that, it isn't very often that we stop to think about how blessed we really are. As moms, we rarely take time for ourselves and we hear over and over again how important that really is!  Read More

Back to School Blues

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

By Karen Grossman, author of the blog Mom in the Muddle

It’s August. My heart sinks when I see store shelves crammed with notebooks, pencils, lunchboxes, and various other school supplies that give my credit card a workout. My kids get lost in the excitement of picking out crisp new folders that they’ll immediately rip and graffiti with their penciled drawings of rainbows and space creatures. Then they realize their days of pajamas till noon are numbered.

While some parents heave a sigh of relief to see school buses again, I must take deep breaths. I’m never really ready for school to start. Just one more week with the kids, or two. We didn’t have enough days to just be. Read More

Asking For What You Really Want

Saturday, August 18, 2012

By Guest Blogger, Cristin Whiting, PsyD

Why is it so hard to ask for what you really want?
Everyone has had the experience…

Maybe you want a raise or a promotion at work. Maybe you have admired someone for a long time and you want to move your relationship from a friendship to a romance, or maybe you want a certain kind of physical affection from your partner. (Let’s face it money, love and sex are really the big places most get hung up.)

At first blush, asking for what you really want takes bravery or courage. Even with the most artfully phrased and well-reasoned requests, you still can’t be certain what response you will get. Yet, while the element of uncertainty is part of why people get so tripped up when it comes to asking for what they want, there is more to it than that… Read More

What is Your Fear?

Sunday, August 12, 2012

By Guest Blogger Patricia Pike, a recent Mom on the Move

FEAR is such a little word, yet so big. In fact, it can be a giant word. We fear so many things. What do you fear? Do you fear that your children may get hurt, that your husband may leave you someday, or that your financial security may become in jeopardy because of the economy?

As a widow, I fear many things because I no longer have a husband and partner to help with the details of life and believe me they are many. I fear the future for me and for my children. What if I can’t afford for my kids to go to college? What if I can’t make a decent salary and I spend what I have and we end up homeless? What if I don’t find a new husband? How will I make it without a partner? Will I have to make all of the decisions for the rest of my life? What if the world has a global economic collapse and there’s no more money because it’s all been spent by the countries of this world? What about war…on our own turf? Fear has a way of escalating. It can take on a life of it’s own. Read More


Thursday, August 09, 2012

By Kelly Hines, author of the blog Southern Fried Children

Sometimes, it's a truth said in the heat of an argument about nothing - "You're on the computer all the time."

Sometimes, it is a heart crushing proclamation made by a five year old who's been denied screen time - "I don't want to read a book! Books are boring! I HATE BOOKS I WANT TO PLAY WII."

I hate books. The words brought tears to my eyes. How could my child hate books? How could my child prefer to spend her time watching Spongebob or playing video games or browsing the app store or anything, anything but read a book?

The answer is simple. Me.  Read More

Whatcha Think ~ Blowing the Whistle on Infidelity

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

I rented The Descendants with George Clooney the other night. Definitely a tear-jerker of a movie. During the movie, he finds out that his wife was having an affair. (This is in the previews, so I am not spoiling anything!) George's character also comes to find out that one of the couples who they are very good friends with knew about the affair but did not tell him.

This got me thinking about "the right" thing to do when you are put in this situation. I have used the example of the movie, but we all know this often happens in real life. Friends are put between a rock and a hard place as they try to decide whether to stay out of the situation all together or to let the spouse know about the infidelity. Read More

Tell Me I Heard You Wrong

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

By Thea DeLoreto, author of the blog The Lint Trap

Yesterday it finally happened. My worst fears confirmed. The moment I have been waiting for since I found out that Lady Baby was of the female variety. My child uttered the following phrase, casually yet matter-of-fact, as if it was the most obvious thing in the world. "Dada is my best friend."

I inquired further, thinking I must have heard wrong. Foolishly I asked, "And me too?" She stared my straight in the eye, right there in the frozen food section of the Teeter and said, "No. DADA. Not you." And a little piece of my soul withered and blew away. I watched it float like a tumble weed down the aisle. Between the end caps of cashews and coffee, past the magazine rack and Red Box. Over the heads of the old couple checking out with a handful of coupons, and out the door into the balmy evening. Ouch. That is going to leave a mark. Never getting that sliver of my heart back.  Read More

Under One Roof

Sunday, August 05, 2012

By Guest Blogger, Jill Osborn

Living at home with my parents to save some money for a house, wasn’t exactly how my husband and I pictured our lives when we got married, it does have it’s perks... especially since we have a toddler and I’m pregnant again. I thought I might share the top five reasons why sometimes as a mother, it can be ok to live at home with your mom and dad... for a while.

1. In Your Business Isn’t Always Bad.
“Are you ok?” Mom asked. As soon as she said this, I realized that when you live at home with your parents, you can’t always hide the turmoil of what’s going on inside your head or your life. Read More

I'm Not Crazy! I'm Not Crazy!

Thursday, August 02, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

How many times in your life have you had to try to justify your craziness? I hate to admit it, but as women, I think we all have come across one point in time in our lives where we can look back and say, "Wow. I really was a crazy person." I can't help but to think of Bravo's Real Housewives of NJ screaming at each other saying, "You're crazy!" "No, you're crazy!"

By "crazy" I don't mean going off the deep end and getting yourself locked up. By crazy I mean stressed. By crazy I mean irrational. By crazy I mean crying over the silliest of things. Been there? Done that? Me too. Read More

Whatcha Think ~ Scruples Edition

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

Remember that game Scruples that was popular years ago? I loved that game, and still enjoy having “scruples-scenario” conversations with friends every now and then. The crazier the scenario, the better. Speaking of which, I came up with a list of scruples-like questions below to share with you. Some are age-old “what would you do” questions – while others are questions I either made up or were posed to me at some point or another.

To play, choose any question(s) you would like to answer and post your responses below! Ready? Let’s play! Read More

Do You Love the Olympics? (Then Test Your Knowledge for a Chance to Win!)

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

Do you love the Olympics as much as me? Ten years ago I had the fortunate experience of attending the 2002 Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City. Since then, I’ve been hooked on all things Olympics.

To celebrate this upcoming once-every-four-year phenomenon, I thought it would be fun to share some of my experiences – and also host a mini Olympic trivia contest. At the bottom of this post are three questions. The first reader who guesses EVERY question correctly will win FOUR free Happy Meals from McDonalds, the Official Olympic Restaurant of the 2012 Summer Games in London. Let the Games begin! Read More

‘Recess’- It's Not Just a Grade School Thing

Saturday, July 14, 2012

By Guest Blogger Leigh Anne Hunt

"Forty four percent of adults would participate in recess, if offered at their workplace." ~ Karla Walsh, FitnessMagazine.com

"Play is the highest form of research." ~ Albert Einstein

There’s something nostalgic about the word ‘Recess’. When I hear it, my mind immediately drifts to a classroom where all the kids start to inch towards the edge of their seats as the clock’s hand seems to creep towards that magic number that will produce a shrill andglorious bell. It seemed to signal that it was okay to run around like a wild child, to clump together with a group of girls and giggle, or to follow the boys to the soccer field like the tomboy I sometimes liked to be. It was a time to march to the beat of my own drum. ‘Recess’ was an exciting time of day that set me free from the rigid schedule of schoolwork that made my brain tired and my body anxious. Read More

Whatcha Think ~ Who's On Your List?

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

We've heard it before, "Oh, Brad Pitt ... he's on my list!' If you haven't heard it before, you should know that "the list" can have many meanings. To some married women, the list is the men who they would be able to enjoy a romantic evening, with no consequences from the spouse. The chances of this are probably slim to none, so most spouses have nothing to worry about. For others, the list is their top hotties in the entertainment industry. And still for others, the list is their dream men.

We'll let the list mean whatever you want today because all we are interested in is who is on it! In order to not be completely humiliated, the TMoM team has given our lists, but combined them together. (If you know any of us personally you may be able to figure it out!) OF COURSE our husbands were at the top of each list (ahem) but we left them off since none were celebrities.  

Please list your TOP 5 men (or women if that's your thing) in our comment section below! Read More

One Mom's Review of 10 Pregnancy Apps

Monday, July 09, 2012

By Guest Blogger Sarah Scott, founder of A Safe Space Playgroup

When I found out I am pregnant with our second child, the first thing I did was tell my husband, the second was to download every pregnancy app I could find. Okay, so maybe that was like number ten on my priority list, but it was definitely imperative that I had the support in place, in addition to finding the right high risk OB. A seasoned pro in pregnancy since my first pregnancy had been a high-risk situation, I wanted to make sure I was not lacking in information or support this time around.

I want to share with you some of the apps I downloaded and help you make an informed decision before you hang your head in shame after buying $30 on apps like I did. Read More

Money and the Recession: Full Disclosure?

Thursday, June 28, 2012

By Guest Blogger Kristen Daukas of Ten to Twenty Parenting

Here’s the obvious statement of the day: times are tough for almost everyone. Those who never used budgets to manage their money have started to and those who had them before the recession have tightened them up. Some families have weathered the storm with little financial impact and others have had the wind knocked out of their sails.

Personally, we’ve done “okay” the past few years in this God awful recession.. not great but we’re still standing (so far). We’ve knocked on a lot of wood and realized that stressing over it doesn’t do anything except rob us of the little moments when there is laughter and fun times. As far as money goes, I figure we’ve been thru worse before and we’ll come out ahead in the end. We’re healthy and we’re together. Believe me – a lot of our friends don’t have that going for them. Read More

Whatcha Think ~ How Did You React to this Video?

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

By now most of you have probably seen this heinous video that's been making lots of headlines. But if you haven't - I warn you - it's extremely disturbing. It depicts a 68-year-old grandmother in Rochester, NY, being verbally harassed by middle school boys on a school bus where she was employed as a safety monitor. The video prompted so much outrage that thousands of supporters have teamed up to raise more than $600,000 for this woman to put towards a vacation and possible retirement.

This video touches on so many parenting topics, as well as a topic we usually do not hear much about. And that's elder bullying. Bullying doesn't just happen to our kids. It happens to adults - many of whom are teachers or others in positions of authority. Several major news networks have aired this video and interviewed parents on their reaction. So today, we want to hear what TMoM readers think!  Read More

Stop. Collaborate and Listen.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

If you read the title and then said "Ice is back with my brand new invention," you have made my day! But, today's post is not about Vanilla Ice. It is about listening to your kids and giving them your undivided attention! Let me give you an example from my home and you can tell me whether or not you relate:

It is about 4pm in the afternoon on any given school day. We have finished up homework and I am busy doing some work on the computer. One of my children walks up next to me and talks for a good minute or two. I am so focused on whatever it is that I am doing that I just decide to answer with a simple, "uh huh." Child walks away and a minute later I hear the front door slam.  Read More

What We're Lovin' Right Now

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

I've been paying close attention to the conversations I have with my girlfriends lately. I figure whatever we are talking about is what I should be blogging about!  TMoM has hit many of those topics lately with our Shades of Grey post, AG Testing Opinions, Summer Book Reads and "What the heck are we going to do with our kids all summer" blogs!

Today is one of my random blogs where I have thrown together 10 things that I've been chatting about with the gals lately. These are things that I am loving at the moment and figured I'd share the love!   Read More

Whatcha Think ~ Is Depression More Prevalent in Stay-At-Home Moms?

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

I loved the commentary on last week's "Whatcha Think" blog where we discussed Fifty Shades of Grey!  Thanks to everyone who offered up opinions on the book and gave TMoM readers things to consider when deciding whether or not to read this best-seller.  For those who had already read it, we loved getting your feedback!

Today's topic is not as light-hearted and may hit home for some of you.  A loyal reader shared this article with us from Gallup.  She thought it was an interesting study and would be an excellent topic for TMoM.  We agreed and would encourage you to take a read here.   Read More

Whatcha Think ~ Fifty Shades of Grey

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

"Erotic," "pornographic," "sexually explicit," "inappropriate," "mom porn," "uncomfortable," "a beautiful love story," "hot," and "disturbing." These are just a few of the many terms used to describe the New York Times #1 bestselling book by E. L. James, Fifty Shades of Grey. Since the fan base is reported as being composed largely of married women over 30, we had to "go there" today and discuss this book.

In order to not offend readers or "spoil" the book for those of you who have not read it, I will not go into detail about the book itself except for this description I took from Amazon: Read More

Whatcha Think - Kids & Politics

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

As a general rule, we usually try to stay far, far away from politics on TMoM! But, I thought the topic of "kids and politics" might be a good one for this series of "Whatcha Think" blogs. Many moms seem to struggle with how much to tell their kids about current events and politics as well as determining what age is appropriate for these conversations. Some moms feel it can be beneficial to keep young children somewhat sheltered and naive in this department, but other moms feel that there are topics that present great learning experiences.

If possible, I would like to keep our comments clear from Democrat vs. Republican and instead focus more on the questions I have listed below. My goal is to help each other determine the right way to handle politics depending what might work for your family. Since we all have different way of raising our children, I hope that you will find some tips from others that will fit your family's needs.  Read More

Whatcha Think? ~ Time Magazine

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

I am excited to start this new series of posts called "Whatcha Think" where I will present a topic (with no bias from myself) and let our readers do the rest! These blogs will only be successful if you comment (tips on this below), so please share your thoughts ... whether they are good, bad or indifferent. Feel free to share the link with others on your blogs, Facebook walls, or emails in order for us to gain as many different perspectives as possible.

My first topic is the one that started creating a lot of buzz last week. Time magazine came out with the cover issue on the left and it stirred quite a ruckus! Some people felt that the photo was perfectly normal, while others called it disgusting. There were a couple things that created the buzz: one was the actual photo with a three-year-old breastfeeding, the second was the headline "Are You Mom Enough?" which made some mothers feel that is was attack on mothers who don't breastfeed their child for that long of a period, the third was the article it introduced which discusses attachment parenting. Read More

Mothers Are Like Snowflakes

Friday, May 11, 2012

By Guest Blogger, Heather Keenan

As I left the grocery store, completely rain covered, with my soaked nine month old and my even more soaked, fit throwing, two year old I couldn't help but think, “What must the people who saw that two minutes of my life think of me as a mother?”   Did I mention we didn't even make it completely in the door of the grocery store?  That's right, I ventured out on a rainy day to get a few things for dinner with two kids and the eldest lost it before even entering the store.  So we clumsily stormed straight back to the car and piled back in, just as clumsily.  And all I could think was, “What do these perfect strangers think of me as a mother?”  My next thought was, “What has made me worry about what others think of my parenting so much?”

The main thing I try to remember to tell myself is that you never look as crazy as you feel.  On the inside, while my child is throwing a horrid, cringe worthy fit, I am a complete unglued mess.  On the outside, to everyone else, I'm hoping I just look like a mom having a rough moment.  I have convinced myself of this to make myself feel better, so whether it is true or not, at this point in my voyage of motherhood, I do not care. Read More

It's About That Time

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

When I was in my early twenties, I thought a mid-life crisis was when a 40-year-old man bought a red sports car because he didn't want to get old and had to prove he was still young and hip. Now that I am 38 I know better.

A mid-life crisis is real. It is so much more than wanting to be young. It is so much more than buying a sports car. And unfortunately for many of my friends, the time for a mid-life crisis is right about now.

As I wrote a sympathy card last week and told yet another friend of mine I would add her to my prayers, I started to realize how few of my friends were NOT dealing with a serious life-changing event. As I went through my mental list, almost every friend I knew was dealing with the change or loss of a job, a cheating spouse, a separation or divorce, child custody battles, the death of a parent, the knowledge of cancer either in themselves or their child, a spouse struggling with substance abuse, a child diagnosed with a disorder, a sick parent, mental illness, marriage difficulties, etc. It made me sick to my stomach the more I thought about it. Read More

Things I Learned the Hard Way

Monday, May 07, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

Life is funny. Experiences are funny. They are especially funny when they happen to someone else. Thought I’d let you enjoy some amusement today at my expense by reading things that I learned the hard way. And please share some of your own by commenting at the end!

-If you start to feel queasy, nauseous, or sick prior to getting on a plane … do not get on the plane. The pilot cannot take off when someone is stuck in the bathroom. You may just have to exit the plane with sheer embarrassment so the rest of the passengers can get on their way.

-Piggy backing on the above comment, always check the barf bags on the plane. Did you know that yours may have a hole in the bottom?

-When deciding to cliff dive on your honeymoon, make sure you learn the correct position in which to land. A shot in the rear from a Jamaican doctor is not a honeymoon dream.

-When you get a spider bite on your rear, the doctor does in fact need to see it before prescribing an antibiotic, even if he is your husband’s best friend. Read More

'Night Honey!

Sunday, May 06, 2012

By Kristen Bagwell of Triangle Moms on Main

Where do you sleep? At night, I mean. Do you sleep in your own bed? On the couch? In the guest room? In the kids' room? Maybe this is a "parents of younger kids" topic, but I have spoken to a surprising number of moms who say that if they are sleeping in their own bed, it's not with their husband.

Pardon my french, but wth? Read More

The End of the Innocence

Wednesday, May 02, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

About two months ago, my son informed my husband that he knew Santa did not exist. I had been out of town and the two men of the house stayed up talking one night. My son, Jake, will be nine years old this June (third grade). As they were chatting, he told my husband that he knew his dad & mom were the real Santas. My husband listened as Jake gave all of his reasons and theories on the subject. The topic had been brought up previously, but we were always able to coax him back into the magic with explanations for his questions.

This time there was no going back. Jake knew he was right.

I figured this was coming. Two years ago there were a lot of questions, but this past Christmas there were even more. I made a few slip-ups when hiding and choosing their gifts, and Detective Jake was on it.  Read More

What Happened to the Mr. and Mrs?

Thursday, April 12, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

The other day I answered my house phone and this tiny little voice said, “Hi Katie! How are you?” Since I am notorious for being terrible at names, faces and sometimes even voices, I paused as I frantically tried to figure out who this person was. I don’t get a lot of calls to my house phone – most people who know me personally call my cell phone (except for my own mom, of course). So was this a friend of mine? Possibly a neighbor? A mother to one of my child's friends? A TMoM client? After what seemed like a very long awkward moment, I replied with fake enthusiasm, “I’m good! How are you?” At which point the caller replied, “I’m good. Can Emily talk?”

Holy cow! This wasn't a call for me - this was one of my seven-year-old daughter’s friends. I barely know this girl, yet she was talking to me like we were best buds. On a first-name basis. My jaw dropped. I was floored! Read More

The Pedicure Pledge

Monday, April 09, 2012

By Kristen Bagwell, Triangle Moms on Main

In honor of Spring Break, I've dusted off the annual Pedicure Pledge. Many of us have seen the pedicure pledge, but as spring begins, it is now commitment time. As much as I hate feet, I do love this pledge, and if I forget, I am faithfully reminded by my friend Amber, who sends this around every year. (Offenders - you know who you are, ha ha.)

Please raise your big toes and repeat after me:

As a member of the Sandal Sisterhood, I pledge to follow The Rules when I wear sandals and other open-toed shoes.

I promise to always wear sandals that fit.

My toes will not hang over and touch the ground, nor will my heels spill over the backs. And the sides and tops of my feet will not pudge out between the straps. Read More

Throw Momma From the Plane

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

Last week, the Vieau/Stolk family appeared on the Today Show to discuss the fact that they been taken off an airplane in February.  Their dismissal from the plane was due to the fact that their toddler was not buckled in her seat belt and the pilot asked them to leave the plane.  Of course there is more to the story ... Read More

We Have a New Baby!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

Well, sort of. I mean, she is a baby...but not a baby baby. But right now she's the baby in our house and we're doting on her as such. What am I talking about?

Remember when I blogged about longing for another baby? I wasn't kidding, but that plan is not realistic for our family. Instead we did the next best thing (at least for us)...we got a puppy baby! And I have to say, after mothering two human babies over the past eight years, I cannot believe the similarities with mothering a puppy. Of course to different degrees! Read More

Why Do Old People Always Yell At Me?

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

I had another instance occur last week where a complete stranger who was at least 40 years older than me decided to reprimand me for something.  I am sure it is not politically correct to say "old people," so I apologize and if you are offended you are free to insert "the elderly" as you read my blog instead.  I also could not resist running this photo although it really has nothing to do with an old person yelling, but it was appropriate for the time of year and made me chuckle and forget my anger toward "the elderly" for a brief moment.

Back to the story ... I seem to be a magnet for old people.  They are drawn to me.  But not drawn to me because they consider me charming.  Drawn to me because they want to yell at me for something. 

I'll share some of my most memorable old people encounters with you ... Read More

This is Your Face on Botox

Saturday, March 10, 2012

By Guest Blogger Julee Nunley

A few weeks ago, Katie wrote a post on wrinkles and asked in the comments section if someone who had tried Botox would share her experience.  I have done it a few times and although I didn't do it for cosmetic reasons, I did get some cosmetic benefit. So, my experience may not be the typical one for someone who just wants to get rid of wrinkles, but I do think I can give you some idea of what it would be like.

You may be wondering why someone would get Botox if not for cosmetic reasons.  There are a few medical uses for it, including treatment of migraines.  In my case, it was to treat a facial twitch that I have as the result of having Bell's Palsy during my first pregnancy.   Read More

Oops, We Did It Again

Monday, March 05, 2012

By Guest Blogger JoAnne Clifford, author of the blog Life with the Triplets Plus One

All I remember is that it was hot. It was August in Florida and I was just struggling to stay cool while it was 95 degrees outside. I was also waist deep in laundry, diapers, and bottles - the by-products of eight months of caring for my recently born triplets. I was happy, but exhausted. With the triplets being eight months old, I finally felt like I could see a light at the end of the tunnel. I was exiting the baby haze brought on by newborns and was starting to finally feel confident and sure about my family's future and what it would hold. I was starting to feel normal again and then ...

Oops. Read More

The Hardest Stage of Parenting

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

By Guest Blogger, Kelly Hines

The hardest stage of parenthood is when your children are newborns. All they do is eat and poop and cry and they can't do anything for themselves. You are certain you will never sleep again.

The hardest stage of parenthood is when your children are toddlers. They're into everything and eating everything, including everything they're not supposed to eat, and no surface is safe from their grubby, grabby hands.

The hardest stage of parenthood is when your children are preschoolers. Their motto is I CAN DO IT and sometimes they can't, but tell them so and risk unleashing a monster. They are equal parts charm and insanity, and there is no reasoning with them. Read More

Mother Knows Breast

Monday, February 13, 2012

By Guest Blogger Kelly Hines

I'm an unlikely lactivist. No one in my family breastfed. At the time Katie was born, I had no close friends, or even acquaintances, that had breastfed. I don't even own a pair of Birkenstocks. And yet, when I finally got the hang of it with Katie, something really kind of amazing happened. In the midst of all the hormones and emotions and doubts and concerns and obsessive worry about what kind of mother I might turn out to be - I found a quiet moment where nothing existed but me and my baby.

Nursing Katie was rough in the beginning. I thought we were doing okay in the hospital, under the guidance of the Tit Nazi (the one who grabbed my boob and shoved it in that tiny mouth). But when we got home, I freaked. Katie cried and cried and my milk didn't come in. My support system, trying to be supportive, suggested I give her a bottle. I didn't want to, and I don't even know why. I don't know why, suddenly, it was so important to me to breastfeed. Before having her, I'd had a pretty take it or leave it attitude, but now it was a matter of pride. Of failing, without feeling like I'd even really tried. Read More

Have Times Changed or Is It More of the Same?

Thursday, February 09, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

If you've been following our blog for a while you might remember a story I shared a couple years ago about my mom being abducted. She was about five or six - it was the early 1950s - and she was walking home alone from school. She attended a Catholic school and naturally wore a Catholic school uniform. She usually walked home with her older sister, but on this particular day, she was by herself. As she walked through downtown (her downtown was probably similar to Jamestown in size), a man approached her and asked if she went to the Catholic elementary school (there was only one such Catholic school in the town). My mom said yes, so he asked if she'd go home with him to meet his "daughter" who was starting school in a few days. Naively, my mom agreed and got in his car. Read More

Make a Threat, Keep a Threat

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

I recently attended a baby shower where they passed around a book and asked us to write our best parenting advice for the mom-to-be.  Mine was simple ...

"Make a Threat, Keep a Threat!"

How many times have you witnessed something like this:  Read More

Does Size Really Matter?

Monday, January 30, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

Is bigger always better? Oh please...I hope you don't think I'm writing about THAT! Actually I AM referring to certain body parts - but those found only on a female. I'm talking about breasts. Boobs, hooters, rack, ta tas, bosom, knockers - whatever you call 'em - we've all got 'em. To some of us, breasts represent womanhood, femininity, and sexuality. To others they define motherhood and nurturing in the purest sense. And to those of you who are anatomically gifted, I bet you'll argue there's nothing more powerful than cleavage when it comes to getting what you want.

So when it comes to our breasts, today I'm asking what price would you pay (literally) to keep those pecs nice and perky? Read More

New Baby Smell

Thursday, January 26, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

It hit me like a ton of bricks. First it happened at my son’s preschool. Then again near the YMCA daycare. Both times it made me stop dead in my tracks. Part of me experienced an overwhelming sense of sadness, while another part of me just wanted to savor it.

What, or who, was doing this to me? It wasn’t a physical being of any sort. It was “new baby smell.” You know, that undeniable scent of diapers and baby powder. What? I know it sounds crazy but it seems like ages since I had a good whiff of either. I’m just not around baby stuff anymore, and the fragrance was welcoming. It was unexpected. And it was a little overwhelming. In fact, I actually sensed a longing for another baby! Read More

Marijuana - Is It Everywhere?

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

By Rachel Hoeing

Teens and Drugs - Do you think it is a battle worth fighting?

A few weeks ago I had lunch with a friend who told me that she had recently discovered her 15 year old daughter smoking pot.  She was upset, of course, and told me how she and her husband debated on how to handle the issue.  She told me about the talk they had with her daughter and the things her teen told them about drug use in her school and with her friends.

My friend then said, "You know what, Rachel?  Marijuana is everywhere.  I have decided that there just isn't much I can do about it."

I was a little taken aback.  Although this friend was a party-girl herself, it surprised me that she was willing to allow her 15 year old daughter to continue to use an illegal drug without putting up much of a fight.  I can't really remember how I replied, but after I got home and replayed this situation in my head and knew I wanted to blog about it. Read More

Making Your Bucket List a Reality

Friday, January 13, 2012

By Guest Blogger Shannon McGinnis Koontz

Like many of you with small children, New Year’s Eve was a quiet evening at home. My husband and I sipped wine and watched The Bucket List. The movie ended just before midnight, so we counted down to 2012, went upstairs to kiss the kids, and then watched the craziness in New York and L.A.continue to unfold on the television. But my mind was still on the movie, so I opened my laptop and revisited my bucket list.

Fifteen years ago, and long before Freeman and Nicholson took their whirlwind trip around the world, I created my own“bucket list.” I called it the not-so-catchy “Things I Want to Do in My Lifetime” list, but it was the same idea. I wrote down more than 50 things that included various adventures I wanted to experience, classics I wanted to read, and skills I wanted to learn. Read More

What Will You Remember Most?

Sunday, January 01, 2012

By Katie Moosbrugger

Happy 2012! Here's to a new year ~ and one that will hopefully bring much joy, good health, prosperity and happy memories for you all.

Without being cliche, I thought it would be fun to look back at some of the bigger national stories from the past 12 months and rank the most memorable ~ or forgettable ~ stories and events. My list could go on and on, but I picked just five. I think most of you will agree the ones below are some of the more significant stories of the year ~ but there were so many others that defined 2011 as well. What was most memorable to you? Add your picks at the end of this post.

Here are my Top Five for 2011... Read More

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