Musings About Life... After Birth

MovingSucks

Posted by Chelsea on August 29, 2006

Apologies for the lack of recent posts. I am not gone, only in moving hell.

We moved into our new house last Tuesday and are still surrounded by boxes, which is good because we have entire rooms that are devoid of furniture. Unless the cardboard box look will be championed by Domino magazine (if you have not yet read it, run, don’t walk, to your nearest newsstand to buy it - it’s awesome) this fall, we need to make a trip to some furniture stores ASAP. I am so hesitant to buy anything from the ubiquitous Pottery Barn, as their customer service blows and their furniture can realistically be expected to arrive 3 months past their projected delivery date (all kidding aside, I once got a Charleston sleeper sofa from them FOR FREE because it arrived - no joke – an obscene six months past the due date). However, their stuff is so damn cute and relatively reasonably priced, that I think I may just be a sucker and place another order. I liken them to Christina Aguilera and her “Ain’t No Other Man” song: I loathe her for her skankiness and undeserved diva complex, yet I can’t help but want to groove to that tune because the beat is damn infectious. Though it makes me feel dirty (not dirrrty, mind you), when it comes on my radio, I don’t change the channel, I crank it.

Anyway, there is now an enormous DirecTV dish mounted on my deck where a trellis of flowering vines should be, and it irks me insanely. My husband is pissed that I chose to paint our bedroom a dusky shade of grey/lavender (I believe the exact reaction was “I am going to have to check my balls each time I enter this room”), so we are now even.

Thankfully, my son seems to have handled the transition into our new place seamlessly. He pretty much didn’t skip a beat when we moved, which has been most helpful. As long as he has his primary-colored Leap Frog Learning Piano, he’s all good.

Me, I need a new king size mattress, bed frame, dresser, sectional sofa, sofa slipcover, a pair of upholstered chairs for the living room, a chandelier for the dining room, a rug for the sunroom, a desk for my office…...

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Thenot-so-lazydaysofSummer

Posted by Chelsea on August 01, 2006

Sorry I’ve been so MIA recently, y’all. My husband and I closed on our first-ever HOUSE (how adult are we?), and then we jetted off (well, packed the SUV to the brim and drove off, really….) to Cape Cod for a two-week, much-needed vacation. What’s a bit odd, however, is that a “vacation” with a baby isn’t really a vacation. This little guy requires three times as much crap as we do. Between the pack & play portable crib, the mini high chair, the bottles, the bibs, the books, the toys, the food and the God knows what else, we could barely see out the back of our car en route to the Baked Bean State. How can a little critter like that require so much?

Going to the beach yesterday was quite a hysterical effort. Again, we had to schlep so much crap out there. In the days of old, I brought a beach bag loaded with magazines, sunscreen and a towel. Now, I carry two beach bags - 1.5 of which are loaded with diapers, toys, SPF# 856 for the kid, bottles, cheerios, toys, a change of clothes and a bunch of other who-knows-what - all of which we truly needed. Luckily, he did fall asleep on a towel under an umbrella, but woke up after a loud-mouthed seagull came by and tried to steal our stray cheez-its. Damn bird! I finally had a moment of serenity and was almost done with my People magazine article featuring Lance Bass of ‘N Sync coming out before the baby was rudely awaken. While we’re on that topic, aren’t all boy bands gay-alicious? I mean, should any of us really be all that surprised by Lance’s revelation? Closets are for clothes, boy banders! Be out and proud! The gay boys buy your CDs just much as the teenage gals! Anyway, back to the beach scene….it was, needless to say, not the world’s most relaxing day, and to top it all off, I think my kid still has sand in his butt crack.

Anyway…I must run. Little guy’s waking up from his nap, so this gives me another 4-hour window to enjoy “vacation” before another sleep session. Long days on the beach, I loved you when.

I need a vacation after this vacation.

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Youcanlook,butdon’ttouch

Posted by Chelsea on July 26, 2006

People do a lot of things that annoy me. Wearing nude pantyhose (unless you’re a flight attendant, which, even in that case, is still pretty unacceptable), talking really loudly on a cell phone when in a public place (dude, check it – you are not the most important person on Earth, and no one wants to hear your conversation), littering (the most selfish act around – it’s like saying, “You, pick up my trash, as I’m clearly too good to dispose of it myself”) and signaling late just before making a turn (if I had known you were going to turn, I would have switched lanes so as not to get stuck behind you for the next 15 minutes) are all examples of what I consider to be offensive behavior.

Now that I have a child, a new act has risen to the top of my list, ousting nude pantyhose-wearing: touching my child. Do. Not. Touch. My. Kid.

I have no problem with friends or relatives kissing, squeezing or coochie-cooing my son, but the minute a stranger lays a hand on him, I become one of those cartoon characters that turns red, and then steam begins shooting out of her ears. I desperately need to know this: what is it that makes a stranger think it’s kosher for to touch my kid with his or her God-knows-where-they’ve-been hands? Honestly, the chutzpah (nerve, to you gentiles) of these people. I understand that they think he’s cute, squeezable, whatever (and honestly, you’ve seen my kid – he really is), but why not simply say so? Is it necessary to actually experience his squeezeability?

I’m really not a big germophobe; my kid rolls around on the floor, and I’ve been known to give him back his plastic keys to gnaw on even after they’ve fallen on the floor at The Cheesecake Factory. However, you don’t know if the sales clerk at Bloomingdales just wiped her nose before grabbing your kid’s hand, or if the nail technician’s fingers were soaking in chemical-laden polish remover prior to grabbing your son’s cheeks. Occasionally, people will even reach down and attempt to KISS my kid. Honestly, who goes around kissing strangers anyway, even if they are kids? Believe it or not, more people than you think.

Some moms don’t mind any of the above, but it seriously unnerves me. When my kid was young, I didn’t quite know how to handle it. I’d sort of nervously sit there, hoping that it would end fast before I hauled off and smacked the person. As I became a bit more secure in my authority as my son’s protector, I began speaking out, clearly – yet icily - stating, “Please don’t touch him” to anyone I sensed was getting close to grabbing him. This was difficult for me at first, as I hail from the South, the American birthplace of gentility. To rock the boat in such a way isn’t sweet, and to be a girl and not be sweet is to not be, most Southerners believe. I have realized, however, that when it comes to my kid, sweet be damned. If shielding him from a germy smooch or shake is deemed nastier than the smooch or shake’s potential repercussions, I could care less, I’ve decided. In fact, I think it’s good practice for future situations in which I might need to advocate for my kid, you know?

God help that first kid who steals his toy on the playground.

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Chain,chain,chain…..

Posted by Chelsea on July 22, 2006


I have a dirty little secret. I love chain restaurants. Looooove them.

I’m embarrassed to admit this because I’m actually a major food connoisseur. Besides those little round green peas, there is no food I dislike, no food ethnicity I don’t adore, and no show on the Food Network I don’t watch regularly. Thanks to a few former jobs with expense accounts and deep-pocketed parents/mother-in-law, I’ve eaten at nearly every foofy restaurant in Manhattan and can wax poetic about each and every one (my waistline, perhaps not so much). I appreciate foods that much of the general public finds disgusting - caviar, octopus and even sweetbreads (yep, cow’s brains), and I am always trying to get my husband to branch out a bit more, as his idea of food adventurousness usually amounts to grabbing Chinese or Italian. I love the décor of great restaurants, and who can’t love the butt-smooching service? There’s really nothing I enjoy more than a five-star restaurant.

However, since moving to the ‘burbs and becoming a mom, I have found that despite my food snobbery, I have come to adore chain restaurants. I understand that this declaration may very well cause my food connoisseur card to be revoked, but if that means being able to continue eating copious quantities of The Cheesecake Factory’s White Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake, then take it, baby. Take it all the way to the South Pole and feed it to a polar bear.

While I recognize chain restaurants’ downsides - crowds, menus so excessively large they actually feature advertisements, calorie/fat laden menu options and mall locales (not that there’s anything wrong with the mall, mind you, but heading to the mall to dine doesn’t exactly ooze sophistication), I can’t keep myself away from them. Perhaps it’s the “you always know what you’re going to get” aspect; there’s comfort in consistency, you know? If you order the spinach-artichoke dip at Houston’s, regardless of whether you’re in Atlanta or New York City, it’s gonna taste the same: damn freakin’ good. I also love that despite the sometimes obnoxiously large menus, there are generally a vast array of choices to suit whatever food mood you’re in. Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, considering where I am in life, how can I not love a place that always has high chairs, and hardly ever minds that my kid leaves the contents of half a box of Cheerios on the floor after I leave?

My chain restaurant “scientific research” (read: repetitive dining) has resulted in a classification system. At the top of the “food chain” (pun intended), you’ve got your Upscale chain, where the atmosphere is inviting and the food is truly good (my beloved Houston’s falls into this category, as does, say, Morton’s Steakhouse). Next, you’ve got the Still Good, Yet Not Exactly “Upscale” chain, where the atmosphere is slightly corny and the food, despite having an assembly-line quality, is still quite tasty (we’re talking my equally exalted Cheesecake Factory, Bertucci’s Brick Oven Pizza and P.F. Chang’s). Finally,  there’s the Really Not That Good, But In A Completely Disgusting Way, Actually Kinda chain, where you know their TV. jingle just as well as you know that their interiors are gonna be as cheese-tastically theme-y as their extensive appetizer list consisting of wings and loaded potato skins (Applebee’s, TGI Friday’s and Chili’s). My favorites are the first two categories, but, admittedly, I have been known to even find something at the latter that I really enjoyed (come on, who doesn’t like loaded potato skins, or anything topped with cheese, bacon and sour cream, for that matter? OK, kosher Jews, but you know what I mean….).

When I was pregnant, I went through a time when I HAD to have the Santa Fe Salad at The Cheesecake Factory at least 3 times a week, and their Oreo Cheesecake, nearly daily, the evidence of which I still carry around my midsection (this whole “nine months on nine months off” thing is crap, by the way). As much as I’d love to blame it on pregnancy cravings, it had nothing to do with my being knocked up. Similarly, I can account for my continued patronage of The Factory by my need to go somewhere kid-friendly that won’t shoo me and the momtourage away when we arrive like the stroller brigade, requesting extra napkins by the truckload, but it would be a lie. Like a crack addict, I needed my fix then, and I still do now. The food is just that good. I’m Chelsea, and I don’t think I have any sort of problem; If lovin’ chain restaurants is wrong, then I don’t wanna be right.

While my regular visits to chain restaurants undoubtedly horrify my Manhattanite pals nearly as much as they do my food aficionado family members, I say they don’t know what they’re missing. Sure, chain restaurants are completely ‘burby and designed to appeal to the mass market, but so is Target, and how much does it totally rule? Seriously, the next time you’re at the mall, pop into P.F. Chang’s and hook yourself up with some Chang’s Spicy Chicken. I dare you not to love it, much less become addicted.

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Areyouinorareyouout?

Posted by Chelsea on July 19, 2006

Is it possible for Project Runway to rule any more than it already does?

Ladies (and gentlemen who are like ladies), if you have not checked it out, run - don’t walk - to your tivo. I honestly look forward to Wednesdays almost as much as I do to my son’s naptime. Gay men and pagent dresses? Seriously, what’s more entertaining?

10:00 pm on Bravo, girls, with reruns throughout the week.

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Howyoudoin’?

Posted by Chelsea on July 19, 2006



I got hit on the other day. By a girl. In the Nordstrom bathroom.

It’s not nearly as interesting as it sounds. In fact, quite the opposite.

Like a bar serving Enfamil, the Nordstrom bathroom is somewhat of a mommy pick-up scene. For those not in the mom-know, customer-friendly Nordstrom has these adjacent-to-the-women’s-restroom areas called “mother’s rooms”. They include comfy couches and chairs on which you can sit and feed your baby, and a luxe changing area, complete with sink. If you’re at the mall and find you need to change or feed your baby, you head for this room, a far more savory dwelling than some random bench in front of Bath and Body Works. Of course, I’d never ventured into one pre-baby, but post, I found that I practically began living there whenever I go to the mall which, admittedly, is often (I’d try blaming it on not wanting to walk outside in the really hot weather, but who am I kidding?). .

Naturally, there are always countless women and their babies in this room, and more often than not, they’re checking each other out and chatting each other up in hopes of making a connection, much like a guy does when he sees a hot chick at the local watering hole. Just as men and ladies size each other up over cocktails at a bar, in the Nordstrom bathroom, women totally check each other out. While some moms only come for the cushy amenities, much like some singles truly do head to bars to simply grab an after-work drink, many come to cruise for other mom friends.

I’ve noticed that in the Nordstrom bathroom, the pick-up isn’t totally unlike the scenes that often play out at a bar on any given Saturday night. What’s different is that “How old is your baby?” has replaced the Joey Tribbiani-esque “How you doin’?”, and imagining yourself grabbing lunch with this other mom and her kid takes the place of imagining yourself in bed with the with the guy. Here’s how the pick-up usually plays out: If a mom in the room deems you look vaguely normal, chances are, she will say something to you. Assuming you find her equally appealing, you’ll begin a conversation. If not, you’ll focus on changing your kid’s diaper, just like you used to blow off the cheeseball in the bar by focusing on your drink or excusing yourself to get another. If there’s a “spark”, you’ll sit and talk, discussing when your kid began sleeping through the night and whether or not you’re going back to work. If things are going well, one mom will make a “move” by either asking for your number or email (or offering hers). If there really was a connection (The new “we both love Thai food, The Beatles and The BBC version of The Office” is now the oh-so-sexy “we both live in Chevy Chase, are former middle school teachers and have husbands who are lawyers”), someone eventually suggests heading to Starbucks to grab a coffee. Thus, the first date begins.

I’m consistently blown away by how the parallels between dating in hopes of finding your future spouse and meeting other moms for friendships/future playdate potential are so very similar. The pick-up scene in the Nordstrom bathroom is just one example; being set up on “blind dates” is another. Occasionally, and probably because I’m still relatively new to the DC-area, people will “fix me up” with a friend of theirs who recently had a baby or already has a young child. This potential mom friend and I will play phone tag for a while, and then finally meet up for lunch or coffee or lunch. Much like a blind date, if it goes well, you’ll arrange to meet again, and if not, you’ll just sort of “nice meeting you” and be about your own, separate business.

I actually had a really good mommy blind date once, set up by my friend Alli’s mom, who I have never met, mind you.  Isn’t that just like so many blind dates? You don’t always really know the person setting you up, but he or she just knows you and the other party will hit it off because you both are Jewish/from the South/are Jewish/like the theater/are Jewish, etc. Usually a traditional blind date is a dud, but often, a mom blind date is a winner. Unlike when you’re seeking a life-long mate, with mom friends, your requirements aren’t so specific. Essentially, you’re primarily seeking a woman who isn’t annoyed when you’re only 50% focusing on your conversation because you’re talking while spooning Garden Vegetable Medley into your kid’s mouth, and he’s smearing it all over his face. If she’s a cool person with whom you have shared interests, then jackpot!

I never thought that after having been married for five years, I’d be back on the dating scene, but as a new mom, I totally am.  While the places I’ve met other moms definitely differ from those where one can meet guys – the Nordstrom bathroom vs. a bar, the JCC “Mommy and Me” class vs. the New York Road Runner’s Club’s singles runners group – the “scene” is so very much the same. When you think about it, both are about looking for a person that provides you with support, friendship, compassion and good times. Therefore, just as with dating, it makes sense that moms actively seek each other out for such relationships. Just like having a husband (in my opinion, at least), forging these relationships really does enrich my life.

The woman who tried to pick me up in the Nordstrom bathroom the other day seemed really nice, but in the end, I didn’t really return her advances, as I’m already seeing Alyson, Becky, Brigid, Dana, Jayme, Jenny, Lauren, Linda and Melissa pretty seriously. Oh yeah – and my husband too.

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ABritneyMoment

Posted by Chelsea on July 16, 2006

I did something really stupid the other day.

My friend Melissa and I arranged to take our kids and meet each other for a day of shopping at the outlet center in nearby Leesburg, VA. After I put the stroller together (why does the damn Bugaboo come in two parts? Seriously, for $900, the damn thing should fold), I put my son in it, and then got out the SPF 50 in preparation for covering every inch of his alabaster skin. Before slathering him with the stuff, I took off my rings, and set them on my car’s bumper, as I didn’t want to get sunscreen all in the crevices of the diamonds and everything. Much squirming later, fully protected and fully schvitzing, he and I went about our mostly merry way to meet Melissa and her son.

In the search for the perfect rug for Melissa’s den, we perused the Crate and Barrel outlet (no luck), the Storehouse outlet (no luck), and the Pottery Barn Outlet (no luck). In the search for clothes/shoes/handbags I absolutely don’t need, we perused the Barney’s New York outlet. Just before we were ready to take off for the food court, I looked down at my left hand’s ring finger, and my heart stopped.

“Melissa, we need to leave now.”

“What? What’s wrong? Is everything OK? Do you need to change his diaper?”

“Now.” I squeaked, maneuvering my stroller as fast as I could out of the store, as some woman wearing really ugly Lily Pulitzer shorts held the door open for me.

“Is everything OK? What’s happening?”

As we raced towards my car, I recounted to Melissa the whole sunscreen application thing, explaining that currently, thousands of dollars worth of diamonds were resting on my car’s bumper in the middle of the Panera Bread parking lot. “Please, sweet Jesus….let my rings be there,” I kept saying. Sweet Jesus? I’m Jewish. Clearly, I felt the need to cover absolutely every one of my bases at that moment.

“Chelsea, that was so stupid! What were you thinking? Go! I’ll watch the boys,” Melissa said, shoving me toward the direction of the car.

Clad in uncomfortable yet totally cute flip-flops and a dress that my husband surprisingly pointed out revealed a little too much cleavage, I sprinted to the car. I wish I had a video of that – it totally would make everyone I know laugh, and probably a few who I don’t. My mind raced. “Holy crap, what will I tell my husband?” I wondered. “At least they’re insured, but oh my God, what if they’re not there?” Visions of the moment he gave me my engagement ring swam through my head. I was ghost-white.

I arrived at the car, and miracle of miracles, there was my bumper, blinged out in platinum and diamonds. Thank God. And Jesus.

Crisis averted, I ran back to Melissa, who was profusely apologizing for calling me stupid. I was in no way offended; she was completely right – it was stupid. Insanely stupid, in fact. Seriously, what was I thinking? Clearly, I wasn’t.

I’ve found that recently, despite being an intelligent, relatively responsible person, I’ve been having brain freezes like this. Admittedly, it sometimes even involves my kid. When he was still in his infant seat, the loss/ease of use of which I still mourn, I once ran an afternoon’s worth of errands, only to realize when I got home that I had never strapped him in. Mortified of receiving the 2006 Worst Mom Ever award, I told no one until my friend Alyson – one of those “totally together” moms - admitted during one playgroup meeting that she had on more than one occasion done the same. Whew. The momtourage and I have taken to calling these momentary lapses of brain activity “Britney Moments” in honor of the maternal train wreck that is Mrs. Federline. We’ve all admitted to at least one, and I’m sure there are other, perhaps even more embarrassing occurrences, to which we haven’t.

It’s tough enough keeping your life in order when you don’t have a kid, but when you do, it sometimes seems like all bets are off. Remembering all of your to-dos (pick up dry cleaning, get more raspberry-lime Poland Spring, mail baby gift to friend, call best friend and tell her you totally thought of her earlier when you heard Debbie Gibson’s “Only in My Dreams” on the radio) is challenging, yet when you couple them with your kid’s “list” (pack swimmy diapers in addition to regular diapers or you’ll get kicked out of the pool, bring an extra bottle of water because it’s really freaking hot, take a change of clothes in case he pukes all over his so he won’t be stuck wearing his friend Lily’s flowered sweatsuit like a drag queen again), it’s nearly impossible. Seriously, how do women who have multiple kids do it?

I figure that there’s a chance of eliminating – or at least reducing the frequency of – such instances if we all just slooooowed down. No need to rush –everything will eventually get done when it needs to, right? Chill, baby! Ha. For a woman who was always go-go-go pre-motherhood, how can she be expected to change her speed once the baby arrives? While new moms like me may fear losing their former selves, we sometimes need to let them go.

As I’ve committed to evolving into a new version of myself, I guess I need to at least try – at least if I plan on hanging on to my jewelry. Therefore, my resolution for this week is to resist the urge to do anything at Mach 3. With the exception of using those Gillette razors to shave my legs, of course.

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AcalltoSvenandInga,answered

Posted by Chelsea on July 13, 2006

My baby looks nothing like me, and I have a major complex about it.

As you can see from my photo, I’ve got your typical Nice Jewish Girl looks: dark (well, not totally, thanks to my highlights, but naturally dark), curly hair, darker skin, 5’2” on a good day height…you get the drift. My son, however, is my Aryan polar opposite: translucently pale skin, white-blonde hair, blue eyes and, according to his recent nine-month check-up, he ranks in the 90th percentile for height.

???????

Everyone seems to think he looks like my husband, who does have the fair skin and blue eyes, but like me, has dark hair and when it comes to height, let’s just say he isn’t exactly being actively recruited to play for the NBA. Regardless, when I carry this kid around, I don’t doubt that others probably mistake me for his nanny. This irks me for a few reasons: 1) Not only did I endure 9 extremely uncomfortable months of pregnancy, but also 7 months of needle-filled fertility treatments, eventually hitting the jackpot with our first round of IVF, to bring him into this world. Is a slight resemblance so much to ask for? 2) I look exactly like my mother. Like, people stop us on the streets and tell us we should enter a contest (seriously, do they have those? how weird….). Because of this, I always assumed my progeny would look like me, because that’s how things work in my family. 3) My genes are the dominant ones! Even biological science is dumbfounded by my kid’s looks.

For a while there, I was convinced that by some accident in the IVF lab, the Kaplan Petri dish was somehow switched with that of Sven and Inga, a nice Swedish couple. “Perhaps your son was a clerical error,” my dad would joke, except I actually believed it may be true. Insert Carrie Bradshaw voice here: Was it possible that somewhere, Sven and Inga were feeding Swedish meatballs to a small, dark, curly-headed hairy baby, wondering where the heck he came from?

I even went so far as to bring these fears up to my momtourage. My pal Becky, a forensic chemist who works for the FBI (dude, how CSI is that?), offered to DNA swab me and him, clearing up my doubt once and for all. I balked, wondering what I would do if my suspicions were verified.

A couple of weeks ago, I saw a baby photo of my husband at six months. I had never seen one before, as my husband is the youngest of three, and his mother literally has no baby photos of him (don’t even get me started….). However, his brother, Michael, managed to dig one up and I gotta tell you: MIRROR IMAGE of my son. Freakishly exact. Just like me and my mom.

Perhaps Sven and Inga’s baby is blonde after all.

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I’mSomebody’sMother?

Posted by Chelsea on July 11, 2006

This past October I turned 30. And became a Mom.

For me, turning 30 wasn’t tough at all. When Rachel on “Friends”, turned 30, she completely freaked out, much like many other women I know. Not me. “No way am I gonna sweat 30,” I thought. “I’m young and cool.” I watch Project Runway, I wear cool jeans and dammit, I’ve got the gangsta rap channel locked into my car’s XM radio presets.

The becoming someone’s mother thing, however, was a bit different. You see, when I consider who “I” am, I think of a woman who once ran a betting pool in which my friends and I placed wagers on each episode of “The Bachelor”,  someone who can read an entire newsstand’s worth of magazines while lounging by the pool, who would eat sushi for every meal if she could, who considers marathon shopping sessions “exercise” and who loves debating the issues surrounding both Jen v. Angelina and Roe v. Wade. As none of those scenarios involve anything close to sterilizing bottles or singing “Itsy Bitsy Spider”, I was certain that my fun, child-free lifestyle would end, just as I was certain Nick and Jessica would, after I gave birth (not that it was a predicition of genius or anything, but I did totally call that). When I pictured trips to the playground replacing trips to Bloomingdales, and discussions of how to decrease our nation’s dependency on foreign oil taking a back seat to discussions of how to decrease my child’s dependency on his pacifier, I got the shakes.

The June before I had my baby, my husband and I were leaving our beloved New York City for suburban Washington, DC, propelled by a “you have to take it” career opportunity he received. “Don’t worry!” my friends cheerfully sang. “You’ll meet sooooo many friends through activities with the baby!” Ugh. The thought of arranging playdates instead of meetings for margaritas was akin to getting in the HOV lane towards Lamesville; the thought of my new friends being women with whom my most common trait was a preference for Pampers over Huggies was incredibly depressing. However, shortly after I had the baby, I was desperate for friends, so I joined a couple of those Mom groups. Wouldn’t you know, I actually met some cool women who I’d have chosen to be friends with even if we didn’t have kids the same age. As it turned out, these ladies were into meeting at each others’ houses, babies in tow, to catch up on the latest episode of The Bachelor that someone had tivoed, and grabbing sushi for dinner, benefiting from the “half-price rolls from 5-7 p.m.” deal because it fit into our pre-bedtime rituals.

While I still regularly pause at the surreality that I am someone’s mother, I know that despite the fact that my life is totally different than it once was, it’s still very much the same. I still know way too much about celebrity gossip and reality t.v., and I still re-arrange my schedule for the Last Call sale at Neiman Marcus, only now, I watch the shows during naptime and shop with friends while we wheel around our strollers. I’ve realized that all of the things I loved doing in the past - even including living in New York City - wouldn’t really work with the life and schedule I now lead. What’s most surprising to me, is that I’m actually OK with that. I can still grab a Taiwanese bubble tea if I want - just now, it’s at the mall. And honestly, it’s kinda nice to drive there in my air-conditioned car as opposed to schlepping cross-town to Lili’s Noodle Shop on the M86 bus, especially with a stroller.

Motherhood, I’ve come to understand, isn’t a death sentence for your formerly cool self. I’ve adjusted my attitude to believe it’s instead a rebirth of my cool self:  I’m “me” while also being “Mom”. This blog is going to chronicle that rebirth, and the adventures – and pitfalls -  my “momtourage” and I have along the way. It will also include my musings on all all of the things with which the pre-Mom me was obsessed (American Idol, why Tom Cruise won’t just come out already, why the clothes at Banana Republic have been so awful lately, why more sushi restaurants won’t make spicy tuna rolls with the spicy sauce on top of the rolls as opposed to added into a chopped-up tuna mixture, the horror that is canned iced tea, the 8,000,000 reasons why Star Jones is in no way deserving of celebrity, etc.), because there are just some things about me that will never change, whether I have one baby or a hundred.

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      So comfy and feminine, I know I'd wear them all summer. But dang, that much money for jellies? Possibly worth the splurge. $275, nordstrom.com
    • New Balance Kids’ Sneakers in wide sizesNew Balance Kids’ Sneakers in wide sizes
      My boys have wide feet, which means finding cute shoes for them is tough. These, however, rock. Prices vary, visit nbwebexpress.com to purchase.
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      This sheer pink polish is, without question, the PERFECT nude pink. Plus, the polish is free of formaldehyde, toluene, camphor and dibutyl phthalate (read: yucky crap that isn't really safe for prego gals). $6, enailsupply.com.