What It’s Like to Be a Mom in Cedar Rapids, Iowa

 Have you ever wondered what it’s like to be a mom in France? How about in Singapore or Australia, New York or San Francisco? This series features stories from moms around the world. Today we feature Cedar Rapids, IowaI! Read on for hilarious and insane moments, advice and moments of relating to another mom.

Want to share your story? Contact MMC!

Name:

Sara Mallicoat

Hometown:

Iowa City, Iowa (but live in Cedar Rapids, Iowa)

Kids:

I am the mother of two boys. Ethan is almost 3.5 years old and Evan is almost 20 months old.

On average it takes me _____ amount of time to get out of the house with my child/children

On average it takes me 25 minutes to get out of the house with my children on a workday. Errands we can be out of the house in 5 minutes, all day trips can take up to 45 minutes (you have to remember those all important things like snacks and drinks!) whereas a weekend trip can take up to the week to plan!

My most insane moment as a parent was:

About 3 weeks post C-section with my second child, I was feeling brave enough to leave the house by myself for the first time (probably still had Adeline flowing through my body for even thinking that this was a good idea)! I loaded everyone up in the car and breathed a sigh of relief for the feat I accomplished and savored the quiet from the top of the garage stairs for a second before grabbing my cup of coffee and hitting the road.

The mall is about 5 minutes from the house, so we decided to stop there to return a shirt. All is going okay and this momma is feeling triumphant – I got out of the house with a 3 week old and 22 month old and everyone was HAPPY!

I got overly confident and decided to the other end and look at Penny’s. I ask Ethan, my oldest if he wants to race to the other end – he of course is excited and mommy is thinking awesome he will be tired and pass out for naptime and I can get a nap too!!   We trek to the other end of the mall and start heading back to other side again to load back up in the car and this is where the crazy starts!

We were walking back nicely until Ethan spots the riding toys in the middle of the mall! I stopped and let him climb on them (because of course if you turn them on, they scare him!) and happily watched his excitement as he pretended to ride the fire truck. I got him off and the melt down started as now we were hungry and tried – his little brother too, and you know what a crying baby does to breast feeding mommy, so I really needed to get them in the car and get home ASAP! I somehow convinced Ethan to walk with me to the car (mind you I never got a double stroller, so little brother is being pushed and my almost 2 year old needed to walk), but mid-back to the other side of the mall he takes off back to the fire truck. So, this mommy ran after him as best as she could, as I was still recovering from surgery – he makes it all the way back to the riding toys and total nuclear toddler melt down is occurring in the middle of the mall as I am trying to drag him off the toys, and little brother is screaming because he’s hungry at this point as well. I pick up my toddler, having to hold him out away from my stomach that is still sensitive to avoid his kicking feet and trying to push the stroller to get to the car as quick as possible – weaving, ducking the fists that flying around, dodging the kicking feet, you know basically looking like a crazy person running through the mall!

Once I got the toddler and stroller safely in the car, I proceeded to feed my youngest in the passenger seat, while my toddler chomped on animal crackers. I couldn’t help but think about what had just occurred as I nursed my sweet angel. I could only imagine how ridiculous I must have looked and wished someone had been with me to videotape the scene! I am sure if I looked around the other mothers were giving me support smiles and I am positive the grandparents were marveling in the good old days and how much they loved their simple lives again, so I was not embarrassed (more grateful to have gotten out alive – haha!), but totally felt like running out to buy a double stroller for my toddler who now all of the sudden liked being pushed once again?

Both boys did fall asleep on the way home and I sat in the dark garage for about 10 minutes basking in the quiet once again before waking the sleeping angels and never did get that nap.

The best piece of mom advice I have is:

To live in the moment and learn to pick your battles, (of course you must stop unsafe behavior) but let them be kids – even if you have a huge mess to clean up afterwards!

I let my toddler help me bake, and yes it takes me twice as long and I have twice the mess, but he loves being my big helper and is willing to try new foods because he is invested in helping make it!

mommy martyr cures cedar rapids mom kitchen

The hardest part about being a mom in Cedar Rapids is:

Keeping my two very active little boys entertained in the winter months when it is too cold to go outside! There are days in January we do not leave the house, so everyone starts to get growly due to cabin fever! We beat the winter blues by whipping up a batch of homemade finger paints and they paint the town red – or rather the tub!

Finger paint recipe: Ingredients: 3 tablespoons sugar, ½ teaspoon salt, ½ cup corn starch and 2 cups of water. Directions: combine ingredients in small saucepan; warm until mixture thickens; cool & pour in containers; add food coloring to create desired colors.

The best part about being a mom in Cedar Rapids is:

Being surrounded by my family and so many family focused activities – there really is something to do a short distance away every weekend (many of them being free)!

Our family loves going to the big farmer’s market downtown where we can enjoy live music and pick up organic and locally grown fresh produce. Other events we take advantage of are free outdoor music concerts, small town fairs and festivals (Iowa City 4-H fair for pork burgers are a must), art festivals, local apple orchards in the fall time where we can pick our own apples and enjoy hot apple cider doughnuts after the hike, charity walks, nature centers and campgrounds.

The places you have to visit with your children near my hometown are:

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7 Surprising Habits that Parents Acquire

1. Staring At the Wall

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Like a poindexter. Staring at the wall becomes a new hobby for parents. Don’t get me wrong, we have loads of,  ambition, an enormous to-do list and plenty of intentions. It’s just that once the kids are in bed the only thing we really seem capable of doing is staring at the god damn wall. Shell shocked. Tomorrow I’ll fool myself once again though, that I’m going to kill my to-do list as soon as they kids nap or go to bed. There’s a sucker born every minute.

2. Watching Previews Instead of Movies

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Movies? Oh yeah, catch ’em all the time in 2 minute snippets. What you thought I could watch a full length film? Ha! I’m lucky if I make it through ALL the previews before falling asleep in my own drool.  You see, parents receive an invisible tranquilizer dart in their ass every night around 9pm. Par-tay on.

3. Vulture Eating

mommy martyr cures leftovers

Yep. Really sexy. All those bits and pieces your sticky-handed kids left on their high chair, you’ll eat it. That leftover Mac&Cheese, sure why not? Bread crust? It’s what’s for dinner.

4. Swapping Showers for Baby Wipes

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Showers are a thing of luxury. Something that goes on your to-do list the same way “pay the bills” does. Until you figure out that baby wipes can do so much more than wipe a little poopy ass. They can kinda shower you.

5. Describing Your Actions in Third Person.

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This becomes how you communicate with your partner in a charming and oh-so condescending manner. It’s how you tell your partner that he/she is failing in a more subtle yet, really annoying fashion.

  • Mommy is cleaning the kitchen right now because Daddy didn’t do it.
  • Looks like Daddy is on his own for dinner since Mommy passed out in front of HGTV with her plate of bread and olive oil.
  • Mommy just lost her mind, go ahead and congratulate mommy!

6. Smelling Butts.

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This one may be less surprising since most of us have seen parents do it before becoming one. It’s inevitable. We become little gorillas who smell butts to confirm what is already blaringly obviously – baby just blew out his diaper.

 7. Emotional Transference

mommy martyr emotional transference

Here’s where you describe own behavior and feelings but transfer it onto your child. Really mature.

  • You are being crazy right now!
  • You need to relax honey!
  • STOP SCREAMING!

Uh, look at the mommy in the mirror. Time to make that change.

 

What It’s Like To Be a Mom in Grand Rapids, Michigan

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to be a mom in France? How about in Singapore or Australia, New York or San Francisco? This series features stories from moms around the world. Today we feature Grand Rapids, MI! Read on for hilarious and insane moments, advice and moments of relating to another mom.

Want to share your story? Contact MMC!

Featured image source: flickr user Jeffrey Hartman

Name

Susan Beyer

Hometown

Grand Rapids, MI

Kids

Daughter Siena Elizabeth – 2 – Thoughtful, strong-minded, smarty – pants and a Daddy’s girl

Siena Beyer

Nathaniel Lee – 14 mo. – Loving, stubborn, smart, tantrum throwing Mama’s boy

Nathaniel Beyer

On average it takes me _____ amount of time to get out of the house with my child/children

30 minutes…If I have to be presentable to the public then at least an hour.

My most insane moment as a parent was

One morning after just delivering my son Nathaniel (he was maybe a month old); I was breastfeeding him on the couch – my daughter (15 months – at the time) was chewing on the cords for my breast-pump and she shoved the cords down her throat too far which made her gag. She began projectile vomiting all over the living room carpet (on a full stomach)! I set my son Nathaniel down on the couch (not thinking at all!) and rushed over to my daughter. While she puked all over me as well I turned around to my son screaming after rolling off the couch…

IT WAS THE WORST MORNING EVER! Way to go MOM!

The best piece of mom advice I have is

Being a mom is the hardest job you will ever have and always remember that if your kids are alive at the end of the day – you did a good job!

The hardest part about being a mom in (your hometown) is

Lots of judgmental bitches lol!

The best part about being a mom in (your hometown) is

Lots of play groups, family events, coffee shops, family is very close by, and overall it’s a very family oriented area! Grand Rapids was actually rated by Forbes in 2012 as the best city in the country to raise a family.

The places you have to visit with your children in my hometown are

Would you like to share what it’s like to be a mom in your town? Contact MMC now!

Toddlers Are Rude: Toddler Dismisses Greek Antiquity

How rude can you get? We take you all around the world, we present you with the world’s finest cuisine and what do you give us back? Tantrums and narcoleptic pass-outs as soon as we get to little ol’ places like…ah you know, the freaking Parthenon.

Watch this rude toddler totally dismiss Greece.

Look how much you enjoyed Oia, Greece. Thanks for the back-ache.

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Oh you’re not interested in fine Greek cuisine OR wearing your shoes?

No prob, do whatever the hell you want toddler. Get comfortable.

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Hashtag “I’m lovin’ it” ?

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“Tell me more about Santorini, Daddy!”

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Simply embarrassing at the Acropolis Museum.

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Honey, this is the National Gardens in Athens!

“I will cut you.”

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So look who perked up at where else but the winery?

mommy-martyr-cures-toddler-in-santorini

What It’s Like to Be a Mom in Cincinnati

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to be a mom in France? How about in Singapore or Australia, New York or San Francisco? This series features stories from moms around the world. Today we feature Cincinnati! Read on for hilarious and insane moments, advice and moments of relating to another mom.

Want to share your story? Contact MMC!

Name:

Abigail Cress Brown

Mommy-martyr-cures-Abigail-Cress-Brown-guest-post

Hometown:

Iowa City, Iowa (but I live in Cincinnati, Ohio)

Kids:

One son, Cooper, who is one year old.

On average it takes me _____________ amount of time to get out of the house with my child/children.

Wait, people leave the house with their kids? I quit my job to be a stay at home mom because this seemed crazy to me. We do, however, try to leave the house at least once a day for a walk, the gym, church, an errand, etc… but these are things we do without having to pack a diaper bag. On average, it takes me about 15 minutes to leave the house for this. When a meal is involved (meaning, diaper bag), it’s at least thirty minutes.

My most INSANE moment as a parent was:

Today, actually. My son started wimpering for what seemed like no reason and he started hugging on me so I rubbed his back. Then, I felt a bee on his leg… chaos ensued. Toy hit the floor [hard], grabbed the baby up in my arms, shoe killing the bee, baby crying and hearts beating fast (both his and mine). The bee stung my perfect little baby and the rage I felt towards that bee for hurting my baby solidified the fact that I will likely be an overprotective, terribly mean mother-in-law to a perfectly innocent girl someday. #sorrynotsorry

The best piece of mom advice I have is:

Focus on your own kid and don’t worry about the others you see online. Your baby might not roll over or clap to “patty cake” or have the fancy shoes until all the other kids his age on Facebook, but he’ll do something earlier than them and still be a happy, healthy, good kid that doesn’t care about second hand clothes and toys made out of recycled food containers.

The hardest part about being a mom in Cincinnati is:

My husband and I are both transplants in Cincinnati with no family members in town. It truly takes a village to raise a family and we often feel isolated. Though we’ve made a handful of friends in our five years here, many are Cincinnati natives that still spend time with their high school and college friends, as well as their family – leaving us often in desire of stronger friendships. It would be wonderful for us to have some help and for our son to have more interaction with adults besides the two of us.

 The best part about being a mom in Cincinnati is:

There is SO much to do here! We took full advantage of our family membership to the Cincinnati Zoo but also did many fun [and free] activities for families. Most recently, our township held a “Touch a Truck” event with vehicles from fire trucks to tractors, petting zoo, free face paint and fun music. There are farmers markets all over town every day of the week and we live in a suburb with amazing public schools. It really is a great place to raise a family!

The places you have to visit with your children in Cincinnati are:

You can find Abigail at her blog! 

Would you like to share what it’s like to be a mom in your town? Contact MMC now!

The One-A-Month Dinner Party Goal

It’s a new week. Hell it’s a Monday and I’m pretty damn proud that I know what day of the week it is seeing as I’m on maternity leave.

I decided to make a new goal for myself this week since I usually crush my to-do lists so easily. Like today’s “Take a Shower” – I simply moved it to tomorrow’s list.

Anyway here’s the new goal:

Host a dinner party every month.

Why?

  • Bond with friends (read: use friends to watch my kids while I sip wine)
  • Actually see my friends (read: get out of having to drive somewhere else or worse, take the train)
  • See the first reason’s last word

I already completed my task for this month (with newborn in tow). And now it’s time to plan the next dinner party!

Who’s in on the challenge?

Ready? Set? Go!

Top 11 Things NOT to Say to a Woman in Labor

I’ve experienced labor twice and thankfully both were regular deliveries. The first time was very elongated, I labored at home for hours in my tub, on a blanket outside, moaning at my bedside, receiving support from my doula from 4pm to 2am until we finally went to the hospital and I labored in the tub until 6am and so on and so on.

The second time around my water broke and then the contractions came on like a freight train with no brake system. We had to go to the hospital right away because, as my midwife said, “damn you’re going fast.” She then looked at my husband and said, “this is incredibly painful.” Not that it wasn’t obvious. I was hunched over and gripping the chalkboard’s shelf in triage and moaning like a deranged chimpanzee, contemplating whether or not I could rip the chalkboard off of the wall and throw it into the hallway–for some reason this seemed like it would offer me relief.

Anyhoo, I digress. The point of this post is to acknowledge the horrible things that condescending nurses often say to you whilst in labor. Some I heard personally, others, friends have. So with no further ado…

The Top 11 Things NOT to Say to a Woman in Labor

1. “The contractions are going to get A LOT worse than this.”

Nurse-Ratched

2. “You’re barely dilated!”

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3. We don’t have any rooms ready, you may have to deliver here.”

Here could be the hospital hallway, bathroom or triage. In my case it was triage.

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4. “Why are you moaning and groaning?”

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5. “We don’t have time for/we do not have any pain killers.”

Labor pain

6. “Your doctor/midwife isn’t available right now – she’s dealing with the emergency next door, you can probably hear that woman screaming.”

This one happened during my first labor.

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7. “Hmm, we’re not really sure what’s wrong.”

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8. “Is it okay if the interns watch?”

Yep, I was asked this one personally.

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9. “Hurry up and push, we don’t have all the time in the world.”

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10. “That was a decent push but the baby barely moved down. You have a ways to go honey.”

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And finally…

11. “Wow that’s a hairy baby!”

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Top 5 Things Parents Say at the Toddler Park

As a parent, going to the park can be invigorating for so many reasons:jsp-pics-22nd-march-image-24-682683620

  • You can easily tire out your child/children in a fenced in area
  • You can meet someone new that may be your new best friend for life or the next 5 minutes
  • You can sit your ass down for five-hot-minutes
  • You can adore your child as he plays his little heart out

Perhaps one of the best things however, is learning that you’re not alone. How so? By overhearing the following five things time and again, it tells me that my parenting style is on par with the norm and that I’m not alone in my daily war against the kids.

Top 5 Things Overheard at the Toddler Park

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1. We’re leaving in two minutes…do NOT have a tantrum and do NOT cry.

If standing close enough I then hear mumbled under breath, “For the love of God, please don’t have a tantrum, oh please, please God + silent prayer and a tear or two.

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2. “We can come back but right now Mommy needs a Starbucks, so let’s go!”

Mumbled under breath: “Mommy also needs some quaaludes”

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3. “No honey! That’s not your scooter, get off!”

Mumbled under breath: “Maybe if you fell on your ass and broke a bone you’d learn your lesson for always stealing that damn scooter.”

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4. “Did you just poop?!?”

Mumbled under breath “I frickin’ hope not because your genius mom didn’t pack a diaper.”

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5.  “I said we’re leaving in two minutes!”

This is usually said 30-45 minutes after original claim of a 2 minute departure.  Mumbled under breath: “I gave you so much extra time so please Lord, don’t have a tantrum, I’m begging you.”

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What quotes did I miss??

A Visual and Satircal Journey of Cures for Poor Mommy.