6 Reasons to Not Feel Guilty That Your Kid Is Playing Alone

As the parent of an only child, there are plenty of times when I feel bad leaving my girl to play alone. But truthfully, it doesn’t matter if you have one child or four, because many mothers feel that “am I leaving my kid alone too much?” pang. That, or they feel guilty at times when they can’t join in and play with their children.

As mommies, we should of course make time to play with our kids as that’s how we bond and connect with them, but that should be balanced with making time to have some fun ourselves. Teaching our kids how to be OK with being alone from time to time is a great life skill, but there’s is a difference between neglecting your kid and giving your child time to learn to be independent while you do 50 million other things as a mom.

Read through for six reasons you should feel glad your child is learning to simply be alone.

1. They’ll learn how to manage time.

When you are alone as an independent worker — which many of us are as adults for at least a portion of our day — you need to learn how to manage your time on your own without someone hovering over you to remind you what to do next. Although a child could never be that independent all day long, playing alone can teach a child how to work within a time frame to accomplish whatever he or she wants — build a castle or read a book, etc.

Read More: 6 Reasons to Not Feel Guilty That Your Kid Is Playing Alone

Independent Thinkers,

Laura

Stop Shaming Moms For Bringing Kids Out in Public

There are certainly places kids shouldn’t be hanging about. There are certainly places in which children need to monitor their voices and actions. Libraries. Museums. Fancy restaurants . . . the list rolls on.

Parents understand that some places are more kid-friendly than others, and that they need to keep their kids on good behavior in public, but seriously now, raise a hand if you have gotten the nastiest look from the deepest pits of hell because you dared to bring a child out in public and they acted like — gasp — a child!

The other day, I brought my daughter to the pharmacy to pick up medication, and she was cranky. She wanted me to buy her a toy, but I didn’t want to buy her a toy, so in true child fashion, she was annoyed. I had one woman look at me like we were pariahs. All my kid was doing was whining. She wasn’t destroying anything or being excessively loud.

The nasty looks. The unsolicited parenting advice. The eye-rolls and sighs. When someone looks at a child like they’re an atomic bomb or a cockroach, I can’t help but wonder how the planet earth got so populated in the first place.

Listen, it’s fine if you don’t like kids, but get over it in public!

Read More: Stop Shaming Moms For Bringing Kids Out in Public

Get Over It,

Laura

 

If You’re a Parent With a Phone, You Need to Read This

People say it’s judgmental to knock parents for using their phones. We’re only human after all, right? We have the right to take a break. Socialize. Respond to work emails. Share sweet photos of our babies on Instagram. Obsess over the latest celebrity tweet. Veg out and scroll through our Facebook feed.

We have the right and damn it, we are only human.

I, too, am only human. I, too, check my phone for work purposes or to share a cute photo of my girl on Instagram.

Phones are very much a large part of our worlds. It’s like how the answering machine and CD player became must haves in the ’80s: our phones are our fifth appendage.

But you see, phones are more than a necessity or tool for socialization. They are the competition. They are what diverts our eyes, distracts our attention, and keeps us from focusing on the people in front of us — mainly our children.

 

Read More: If You’re a Parent With a Phone, You Need to Read This

We Love Our Phones, But Maybe TOO Much,

Laura

The 5 Stages of the Toddler Tantrum

Your toddler is adorable as pie until suddenly, he’s face down kicking and screaming in the middle of Victoria’s Secret (yeah, whose idea was it to bring him? Well, you really needed to use that sweet coupon…) and making a whole big scene.

What did you do that was so offensive to said toddler? Oh, say the word “No.”

Telling a toddler no is a guaranteed way to earn yourself one big fat tantrum, but hey, that’s just all part of development, right mom?

Before you send your toddler packing to a sweatshop to make overpriced toys or sweatshirts, you should buck up mom, and simply learn and understand the delicate process of the toddler temper tantrum.

Stage 1: This Isn’t Going to Go My Way, Is It?

This is right when your toddler realizes that mom is about to say no or do something said toddler doesn’t want her to do. It’s when your toddler understands that she’s not going to get her way. It’s when your toddler starts to turn red, get fidgety or simply, start to raise the volume of her cry or of her voice. This stage always happens in public.

Read More: The 5 Stages of the Toddler Tantrum

It Gets Ugly,

Laura

11 Things Your Child Does to Drive You Crazy Each and Every Day

Kids. They say and do the DAMNDEST things. Most of which of course, are done intentionally to drive moms nuts. Some of it of course isn’t intentional, but just part of our kids’ DNA to make us batty. Our kids are born beautiful for a reason: this way we moms remember that even when they push us to the limits of wanting a padded room and restraints, we will still love them and not eat them alive like certain animal mothers who devour their young. In fact, we probably drive our own kids just as crazy. It wouldn’t be as much fun if we didn’t, would it?

1. Make Us Suffer Insufferable Cartoons

If I have to watch “Littlest Pet Shop” one more time, I might start bleeding cats and dogs! It’s actually one of the better and cuter shows though, if a bit pointless. Mickey Mouse Clubhouse made me want to drive my car into a pole, mostly because of Mickey and Minnie’s voice. It’s also the most inane show ever. The learning lessons about shapes and such seemed so blase. Let’s not forget the “Hot Dog” dance.

Then again, Calliou will make you regret motherhood. Well, at least for a few minutes.

Read More: 11 Things Your Child Does to Drive You Crazy Each and Every Day

But We Love Them,

Laura

10 Things That All Moms of Strong-Willed Kids Know

If you’re the proud parent of a strong-willed child you are most likely both incredibly proud and also at times, extremely frustrated. When you come head to head with a strong little being, it can be a challenge to deal with, especially if you happen to also be a strong-willed mom! Of course, there are so many joys in having a strong-willed child, it’s just that many of these joys may come to a parent later on in life.

1. Cut Nose to Spite Face

If you have a strong-willed child, he or she will cut off his or her own nose to spite his or her face! For example, telling a strong-willed child that Santa won’t come if he makes bad choices means your strong-willed child will simply say, “Fine. I don’t care anyway.”

The strong-willed child has to hang onto her convictions as it means so much to her to be right and see her actions come to light.

Read More: 10 Things That All Moms of Strong-Willed Kids Know

It’s a Worthy Challenge,

Laura

11 Things All Parents of Preschoolers Think

If you’re the proud parent of a preschooler, then you will understand what it’s like to be befuddled by the little things they do. For example, did you ever truly believe 4-year-old girls could form cliques? Or that your preschooler would go to school sharing details about mommy’s “magic vibrating wand”? Oh, the preschool years are so precious! And sometimes . . . so dreadfully embarrassing. If you have a preschooler you just can’t live without, you will most likely think and relate to all of these things in this list.

Everything Is Poopy. Everything 

It doesn’t matter what the joke is, the punchline is always poopy. Poopy this and poopy that. You’re pretty tired of fecal matters and, in fact, every time you see the poop emoji, you want to vomit. If someone even says a word that starts with “P,” you instantly cover your ears thinking, “No, not again!”

Why Are They Wearing That? 

If your child wears the most bizarre ensembles and you cannot understand for the life of you why your 4-year-old needs to wear earmuffs in June, you are the proud parent of a preschooler!

Read More: 11 Things All Parents of Preschoolers Think

It’s a Wonderful Time in Childhood,

Laura

9 Signs You Are a Parent Who Was Born in the ’80s

The ’80s. The great decade of excess, spandex, Aqua Net hair spray, turquoise mascara, Jem, hair metal, Michael and Madonna, RUN DMC, and more!

If you grew up in the ’80s, you probably watched after-school specials, know who Woodsy the Owl is, owned gummy bracelets, wondered why Madonna was writhing on a gondola in Italy, and dreamed about being a mall singer like Tiffany and Debbie Gibson.

Of course now, you’re a mom. Your days of Wigwams and hot-pink lipstick are over. Mostly. Instead, you’re probably working or at home with a bunch of littles, hitting the gym, wearing yoga pants and not Wigwams, using lip balm if you’re lucky or neutral lip shades rather than hot-pink lips and turquoise mascara, and most likely, you’ve listened to Justin Bieber or Frozen rather than “Like a Virgin” — sadly.

Here are just a few signs you are a parent made and born in the ’80s!

Your Guilt Over Foods 

You buy the organic brand of boxed mac ‘n’ cheese because you need something quick to make your kids but want it to be somewhat healthy. You buy “healthy” chips and snacks, presenting them to your kids even if they taste like cardboard. You then feel sort of terrible because let’s face it: you most likely downed at least three dozen bottles of Cheese Whiz, the most processed crap known to mankind, and ate Doritos. Let’s not forget the Ramen Pride you enjoyed on numerous occasions. You sort of feel like the flavor police and are so glad your kids don’t have a window to your childhood goodies.

 

Read More: 9 Signs You Are a Parent Who Was Born in the ’80s

Laura

The 5 Stages of Cosleeping

If your child is a frequent flier in your bed or likes to protest his or her inclusion in your bed, you’ll be rather familiar with these five stages of cosleeping. Are you ready? We hope you’re not tired. We forgot to mention that cosleeping usually means . . . not sleeping. At least for the parents! 

Stage 1: The Plea

Your kid(s) will be at your heels, begging to go in your bed. No matter how much you say no or attempt to make their beds look attractive, your kids laugh in the face of your attempts. Your efforts to make sleeping in their own beds look appealing are a waste of time. You find yourself wondering if you are too tired to argue, or if you have enough gumption to keep saying no and redirecting your kids. You will bribe them and most likely, if your bribe works at all, it will only work until around midnight. When the clock strikes 12, your child will be at your bedside, poking you in the ribs until you wake up.

Read More: The 5 Stages of Cosleeping

Hope You’re Not Tired,

Laura

5 Thoughts Every Mom Has at Kindergarten Orientation

I just went to the first half of my daughter’s kindergarten orientation. As I walked into the school, it felt so huge compared to her preschool. I couldn’t believe that after three years of being in preschool day in and day out for most of the time, very long days, she would now call another place “home.”

That saying that “babies don’t keep” is so true. It seemed like just yesterday she was refusing to nap without her mama, curled up on my chest, asleep at the breast. And now there she is, running down the elementary school hallways in which she will meet “the big scary world for the first time.”

As we register those children for kindergarten, there are a few thoughts every mom has before we put our little one on the bus for that very first time.

Read More: 5 Thoughts Every Mom Has at Kindergarten Orientation

It’s the Next Step,

Laura