The Doctor Mom
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Friday, July 30, 2010

You Made It!

Thanks for visiting the new site!!

Bookmark me, follow me through google or sign up for emails to be sent to you (both on the left side bar).

And, let me know what you think...I love comments, complaints, feedback, blogpost suggestions...whatever...commenting is easy and can be found at the bottom of each post.

Happy reading and stay tuned!

This Mommy Got a Makeover...


It's true.

Only mine, unfortunately, did
NOT
involve silicone.
I am excited to announce an upgrade to my 'virtual' home....my blog is moving to...

www.thedoctormom.com


Same content, only professionally decorated and easier to use. Please visit, and often. Oh, and tell your friends too because nothing says you're awesome like a referral. And I need a morale booster.

Commenting should be easy, so now you have no excuse but to join in on my one sided conversation. Feel free to 'follow me' through google or to have new posts emailed to you. Or don't, I'm fine with that too.

I hope you'll check it out. Let me know if you like it as much as I do.


I'm on
twitter too now @thedrmom but have no idea how to use it yet. Follow me if you're bored.

See you there!

PS. My 'surgeon' is my new friend and blog designer Courtney (aka Judith Shakespeare) who does great work with a fabulous southern accent. Check her out
here.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Lazy and unmotivated.

Its Monday morning.  Everyone in my office asks me if I had a nice weekend.  I did.  But I need another weekend to recover from it.  2 days is not enough time to:

  • organize the house
  • clean out the closets
  • hang up pictures
  • work
  • keep children from killing each other
  • go to the grocery store
  • catch up on sleep
  • clear out my DVR (by watching endless hours of TV)
  • blog
  • mail out birthday invitations
  • try to make it to the nordstrom sale so I can pay a little less money for stuff that costs way too much
  • think about how I should make dinner more often
  • exercise
  • do the laundry
  • do the dishes
  • do everything in my power to foster my ZEN world....um, yeah...no!

 

So, that's all I have to say today.  Please let me know if you are aware of an app that can take care of some of these things so I can nap.  Oh, and it would be better if it was free.

Happy Monday!

Friday, July 23, 2010

A break from the routine?

I don't love hot, but I love summer.  There are so many more options for good, child friendly daytime activities.  On the flip side, however, summer really messes with my kids schedules.  They go to sleep late, they wake up late and mealtimes occasionally seem optional.  Not the best combination for this mommy who craves routine, but I'm rolling with it.

Last night, I came home to my babysitter playing with the girls outside in the sprinkler after they had dinner. We brought them in, showered them and then I gave them a special dessert treat.  I planned to do a video then bed. Sounds perfect (to me).  My husband came home and I took a shower.  He had not eaten dinner.  And, in those 5 short minutes while I was in the shower they, somehow, manipulated him into believing that they were hungry and needed him to make them a fresh pot of mac and cheese.  At 8:30 pm.  After dinner, dessert and part of my dinner.  Really?!?!?

I understand both sides of the issue.  Telling them no will lead to much whining and distress.  And then will turn into 2 children claiming they are hungry when they are in bed.  But, I side more with order.  They had their chance at eating.  They don't need another meal.  They are just manipulating their Daddy to stay up later.  Beyond obvious to this well seasoned Mommy of 2 Master Manipulators.

But, I got to thinking about routines.  I am good with routines.  I need order in the midst of my chaos.  My husband, not so much.  This is a frequent point of contention in our approach to parenting.  Our children are so scheduled throughout the year, is it "ok" to veer from the routine in the summer, on vacation, on the weekend?  Will they understand that this is a treat and will not last forever?  Or will they not settle back into routine when that time comes?

There is no right or wrong answer to these issues.  And that is the problem.  If I 'go with the flow' maybe my children will be more maleable, more easy going, more like my hubby.  I love that.  If I press on about schedules and bedtimes and planned activities they may be more type 'A'.  More stressed out, more conflicted.  More like mommy.

Or maybe, just maybe, neither one of us will 'win' and these (so far) perfect creatures will fall somewhere in the middle.  A combination of the two of us.  Better than their individual parts.  And that would, indeed, be perfect.

________________________________________________

Do you veer from schedules on vacations or on weekends?  Do you find it hard to get back on track?

How do your children manipulate you?

Do you dig mac & cheese as much as I do?

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Creative Advertising

I love this video and I NEED  this car seat.  Oh, how I dream of a car seat that I could take in and out without sweating.  When did it come to this?

Enjoy!

Monday, July 12, 2010

All Joy, No Fun??

Yesterday, in some sort of momentary lapse of sanity, I agreed to go to a minor league baseball game in Toledo, Ohio.  Why would anyone do this?

A.  I don't know.

B.  My husband is a huge baseball fan and always is asking to go and he convinced me the girls would like it.  Oh, and Wubbzy would be there.  And there is  a certain little toddler who loves that cartoon.

So, we drove the 1.5 hours to a minor league ball park when we were offered tickets to the major league game playing in our hometown that same day.  Kids slept in the car, then there was whining and singing and videos.  When we arrived it started to rain, actually downpour.  A certain little toddler was TERRIFIED of her cartoon hero.  It stopped raining.  Then it was hot.  Impossibly hot.  And then the whining really began.  Basically until bedtime.  We stayed at the game for 1 inning.

But that is actually not the point of this post.  I came home thinking about parenting and realize that much of the time it is stressful.  And sometimes unrewarding.  And I thought about how to write about this topic.

Then, alas, I realized that I am not alone.  I stumbled upon this article in New York magazine from last week.  Titled "All Joy, No Fun."  Is that true?

I highly recommend you read the article.  But, I will give my quick synopsis and commentary here.

The point of the article is to debunk the myth that children make people happier.  Apparently, according to studies, the opposite is true.  Well, its not that they make you less happy, it's just that they don't make you more happy.  And that each successive child produces diminishing returns (don't tell my husband this).

They go on to describe that some of this is a new phenomenon, becoming more pervasive with the advent of modern technology and changing family structures.  Middle and upper class parents see children as projects to be perfected.  Part of this unhappiness may be due to the fact that many educated professionals postpone their childbearing in pursuit of a career.  And they see having kids as a loss of freedom. "Now you know what you are giving up", and the longer you wait, the greater the expectations.  These are the same parents who are used to reward and over achievement.  The problem is that child rearing is unlike school or career, and there is no black/white right/wrong distinction.  There are many different ways to achieve the same end result (goal: happy, self confident, self sufficient child) which does not become evident for decades down the road.  There are no promotions, no bonuses for good parenting, and the only measure of how you are doing is comparison to others around you.  We see other moms that may seem as if they have it all together; appear fit, well rested, organized and masters of sleep training, and we feel, well, insecure.  This breeds more unhappiness...and the cycle continues.

Now, onto couples.  Do children make a marriage stronger, better?  According to the experts, couples pay the biggest price.  They say that about 40% of most couples' fights are DIRECTLY about the children, and that does not include those that are from tired, short fused people losing it for no reason.  (I've never experienced this, no, not me.)  The good news is that many relationships improve when kids are a bit older, 6-12 years, only to take a harder hit during the teen years.

My favorite quote in the article is this which pretty much sums up my life: "When you pause to think about what children mean to you, of course they make you feel good...The problem is 95% of the time you're not thinking about what they mean to you.  You're thinking that you have to take them to piano lessons."  Children provide little moment to moment happiness but make the retrospective evaluation of life complete.  However, the trick of memory is that even the previous mundane activities with children seem nostalgic in retrospect, leaving us feeling that parenting is, indeed, rewarding.

So, basically...Loving one's children and loving parenting are two totally different things.  If there are times where you are at a baseball game in the humid heat and rain with a toddler who just lost her hot dog and a preschooler who won't stop whining for cotton candy and you admit that you don't love that moment or every moment of parenting, its ok.  Neither do most parents.  And you can still relish the unrivaled moments of joy that these little creatures provide.  Just realize that is only a small portion of your time.  Parenting, like everything else, is work; just with a greater reward.

____________

Do you find parenting rewarding?  How do you reconcile the everyday frustrations with the overall reward?

What do you do when your children whine for hours?

 

Friday, July 9, 2010

Big Girl, Big World...


There are many moments in the story of our childrens' lives that we mark.  Birthdays, first steps, first words; and with each milestone comes pride and celebration.  We mark the moments with pictures and notes to remember, to try to control this runaway train called time.

This week my "baby" reached one of these milestones.  She seemlessly transitioned from her 'cribby' to her new big girl bed.  Her mommy may have lost a little sleep worrying about how she would handle the change, but she was just fine.  Of course she was.  Its only a bed.  But she did great.  A little more snuggling was in order, but the next morning when she woke she was so proud.

Instead of the usual cries for "Daddy...Daddy" there was a different call.  "I'm a BIG GIRL Mommy!" she insisted.

...And she is :(