Thursday, August 30, 2007


Though for my sister-in-law, finding this would equate finding Atlantis, it makes me want to throw up. I HATE SPIDERS (not to mention mosquitoes). But apparently this is a once-in-a-lifetime event so for all you entomologists out there, you better make your spider-web-gawking pilgrimmage to Texas very soon. They expect this monster web to only last until the fall!

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

...And Speaking of Post-Baby Weight...

I haven't tried them yet, so don't hold me to it, but this little invention seems fantastic! I'm tall anyway, so finding shirts that fit me in length is often hard. And now, post-baby, I'm even more desperate for a top that hits below my zipper. I might have to try these: Blush Topless Undershirts. $15 at

Tips For Getting Back in Shape, Post-Baby

During pregnancy, the most I walked was to work & back. I wanted to throw up during my whole first trimester so I didn't do an ounce of exercise. Once you've gone that long, it's hard to get back into a routine...especially with another little person along for the ride. Post-baby, when my son was about 2 months old, I joined Stoller Strides, a stroller fitness class for moms. It was WONDERFUL! I got back into a great routine and saw real results. It wasn't just a Sunday stroll, it was a real workout class taught by real trainers. I encourage all moms to go to and find one in your area. My location has recently disbanded, but it's good because I have a newfound use for our long-standing YMCA membership!

Next time around I'm going to be much more proactive during pregnancy (assuming I can stomach it). This article by Lisa Druxman, founder of Stroller Strides, gives you some great tips on how to prepare for pregnancy and get back in shape post-partum.

SO GLAD I vote Republican!!!

When Fidel Castro picks a Hilary-Obama ticket for the '08 election, I KNOW I'm voting on the right side.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Review Update

Ok, so it seems I spoke too soon. I must admit, Cookie Magazine is not what I had expected. Let's just say if you don't live in New York, have a double-income, only one child, and your kids' fall breaks include a jet-set to Paris, you're probably not going to benefit much from it. The products they review are ridiculously expensive (ie: a LV suitcase for $2,000), and unless you have a nanny, maid, and butler, you definitely won't have time for all the birthday party ideas they give you. Those are just a few examples of why this magazine is not for the rest of us. So...I apologize! I won't be re-subscribing!

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Shocking Revelations From Mother Teresa's Letters

TIME has a fascinating and must-read article about Mother Teresa's own struggle with faith and her total belief in God. It is a shocking view into her spirituality during the last half-century of her life.

In essence, her letters from the time she began her ministry to the poor until she died, reveal that she was tortured by “such deep longing for God,” and that she felt “repulsed, empty, no faith, no love, no zeal.” She says she wanted to believe so badly, but just couldn't feel God within her soul.

The mainstream media will run with this, implying that Mother Teresa was a fraud and a hypocrite and how can we believe anything she said or did now. Non-believers cannot possibly understand the worth of self-sacrifice. My take, and the theory I choose to believe, is that the torment she felt in longing for a true presence of God, was the sacrifice and test given to her by the Lord. Kind of like Jesus' proclamation on the cross, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" This proves that we are all human and have our moments of doubt and question. Perhaps this was the cross God gaver her to bear. Many saints have gone through dark periods of their life. The fact that they continue to perform great works despite feelings of faithlessness, is perhaps one of the great reasons they are called saints.

Please check out the article, and then do some research yourself on saints. Many of them led very fascinating lives that we can all learn from.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

At Least He's Honest?

I can't believe I'm reading this about The Bus! Do people do this? It seems Jerome Bettis is fessing up to having faked an injury in 2000 to avoid getting cut from the Steelers. Though I'm certain this sort of debauchery happens WAY more than we know in professional sports, I'm still amazed. It's The Bus! I thought he would have been above that sort of thing. :(


Sorry I've been MIA for awhile! Was visiting family and enjoying some sun & sand in North Carolina last week and this week has been nothing but catch-up. As the saying goes, "I need a vacation from my vacation." As much as I always need one, sometimes I think it's not even worth taking them, since so much *stuff* has piled up and is waiting for you upon return! And I'm a stay at home mom! But it was a nice get-away nonetheless. And our little 15-month-old was a rock star! He was an awesome sleeper in a strange new house, he was all smiles (pretty much) all the time, and was a trooper in the car. Even in traffic for 12 hours on the way down. He was better than Mom! :) But now we're back and settling in again. You should be hearing (or reading) more of me in the next few days!

Friday, August 10, 2007

Baby Videos - A Hoax?

Newsweek recently published an article about a study by the University of Washington and Seattle Children’s Hospital Research Institute on the effects of videos such as Baby Einstein and Brainy Baby. Apparently, they're not as educational as advertised. In fact, the article says they may even be more harmful than beneficial.

This doesn't surprise me, as having a toddler, I have watched my share of Little Einsteins, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, and the like. These supposedly educational shows may teach children the beauty of classical music, or how to sort 9 balloons evenly. However, the most frustrating aspect to me has always been that these shows do not teach any type of logic! The Einsteins ride in a rocket that propels them from Suburbia to Machu Picchu in .2 seconds, but they can't figure out how to get across a forest in time for a puppet show...and the rocket is following them!! Come on! As I'm cringing in frustration, I am stifling my urge to scream, "GET IN THAT D*MN SPACESHIP AND GO!" But alas, I have a toddler who is quickly picking up words. Or when Mickey is trying to get into *Mickey Park* and big bully Pete plops an arbitrary ticket window at the entrance (within direct view of Mickey & gang, mind you) and says he needs 5 coins to get in, Mickey pulls out and carefully counts 5 coins and hands them over, no questions asked. My questions - Why do you have to pay to get into MICKEY PARK??; and was that ticket window there 5 seconds ago?!? But I guess they need to fill 20 minutes.

Aside from the above disgruntlement, I don't believe that these shows are actually harming my 15-month-old. They may not be quite as educational as publicized, but I can overlook my own annoyances for his occasional enjoyment. My philosophy for pretty much every aspect of life is, "everything in moderation." If you're the type of parent whose idea of exercise for your children is getting up to get a soda at commercial breaks, you probably have bigger problems anyway. But Jack's 40 minutes of Playhouse Disney a day is probably not going to be the cause of him coming in second for that Nobel Laureate nomination.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Great New Hip-Mom Magazine

So I'm not sure I always fall in the hip-mom category, but I'm trying. At least I considered myself somewhat hip before mom-hood, but now it's so much harder to maintain. But I have subscribed to a publication that promises to keep me - at the very least - informed on all the latest hipness. It'a a mom magazine that also gears toward the woman side of us. What's that?...oh yeah...woman! Sometimes I forget. It's Cookie Magazine. Very cute. Not sure it's in stores yet, but check it out. I think they'll give you a free trial subscription.

Comfort For The Traveling Child

Wow...I've been MIA for awhile! But I finally found something I wanted to tell you about. If you travel a lot and are in need of something to keep your children comforted on the plane or during long road trips, try the new Zoobie. It's a patented 3-in-1 plush/pillow/blanket, so it saves room on having to bring every lovey your child can't be without. They come in all different kinds of jungle pets, which is great, because that's what our nursery theme is. Super cute! You can order it at Amazon. Unfortunately I don't have it yet, and we're going on a 9-hour road trip this weekend. Uh oh! Wish I would have seen this earlier!

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Easy, Kid-Friendly, Healthy Recipe of the Day

Easy, kid-friendly and healthy? Sign me up! I made this casserole for a friend who just had a baby and they loved it. So does my family! Here you go:

1 can cream of chicken soup
1 1/3 c water
3/4 c uncooked long-grain white rice
2 c fresh or frozen veggies
1/2 tsp onion powder
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
1/2 c shredded cheddar

Stir soup, water, rice, veggies, and onion powder in a 12x8 in baking dish. Top with chicken halves. Season chicken as desired. Cover, bake at 375 for 45 minutes or until done. Top with cheese.

Proceed With Caution (Or Wine in Hand)

You might need to drink a glass (or seven) of wine before you actually watch this. This guy is out of control. Apparently this website, Wine Library, is the new underground YouTube craze. I suppose it's educational and I could certainly use a lesson or two about really good wine. But I do think I'll have to drink some before watching this again. Enjoy!

Good Luck

Slate has an article today about schools in Australia mandating that children from kindergarten to sixth grade wear sunglasses outside. I find 2 problems with this: a) isn't that up to the parents to mandate?; and b) good luck getting them to do it. While my toddler son isn't near kindergarten age, he rips sunglasses off with a vengeance and then proceeds to rip the earpieces off. I guess 5-year-olds are probably less likely to be so graphic, but if sunglasses bug them, they won't wear them. So again, good luck!

Australian schools are beginning to require kindergartners to wear sunglasses. In the first school to try it, the rule applies through sixth grade; shades are required only outdoors. Other schools expect to follow, and officials are considering "making sunglasses compulsory in all public school playgrounds." Eye experts go further, arguing that "children should wear sunglasses from infancy." Reason: eye damage from UV rays. Early reports: The mandatory shades are "being well received by the pupils." In fact, "[t]he students say they would also be happy to wear their glasses after school."

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Don't Have Kids in DC

Our nation's capital has the poorest public schools in the country in terms of performance. Ironically, it also spends the most on those same schools. So what could be going on? Prime example that shoveling more & more money into public schools (ala Hillary) is clearly not the answer. Money is not the motivator that Democrats would like you to think it is. It's pretty much just a vote-acquiring talking point for Dems. We'll raise taxes and give all the teachers' unions the money! Vote for me! But not only do the District's schools have poor performance, District Mayor Adrian Fenty called a press conference this week to announce that half the schools would not have proper textbooks for opening day nor would they have air conditioning. What?? What are they spending the money on?? Paying the teachers? Are they giving the athletic teams new uniforms? Nope...they spent it on land for remodeling and more buildings. Oh, of course. My question - do citizens of DC actually want MORE crappy schools built? Not that Maryland's are much better, but I'm glad I don't live in DC. Townhall has more.