Musings About Life... After Birth



Posted by Chelsea on January 27, 2009

This past holiday season marked the 25th anniversary of the Cabbage Patch Kid, which made me feel both giddy with excitement and old. When selecting holiday gifts for the two daughters of Lee and Eric, some of our closest friends, I knew exactly what I was getting them:

Fans of the Cabbage Patch dolls will be pleased to know they still come with the weirdest names on the planet. These two were Olivana Elaine and Roxann Candis. Swear.

As I stood there at Target holding the dolls, I got sad. Partially because I kinda wanted one too, but mostly because I was bummed that I don’t have a daughter to buy one for. I looked across the aisle at all of the monster trucks and Lightening McQueens and cursed them. Almost instantly, however, I snapped myself out of it. Poor, unfortunate me: I’ve got two fabulously amazing, absolutely adorable little boys.

Just as I was leaving with Olivana and Roxann, a curly-haired brunette Cabbage Patch Kid glanced at me from across the aisle. I scooped her up and added her to my cart, dammit. Meet my new doll/daughter, Renee Fiona:

She has my hair and my husband’s eyes.



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Posted by Chelsea on January 26, 2009

My Monday Mom Must-Haves generally focus on the latest and greatest kids’ oriented gear. Today, however, it’s all about us, ladies. I have found what is undoubtedly the WORLD’S BEST MASCARA. Period, end of story. This afternoon (Monday) at 2:00 PM EST, I’ll be joining Broads Molly and Christine of Sirius/XM Radio’s “Broadminded” (tune in on XM Channel 155 and Sirius Channel 120!) to spread the gospel of this mascara and give away some on-air!

I am fairly obsessed with mascara, and am always on the hunt for the one that will give me ridiculously big, full, porn star-esque lashes. I’ve finally found it: Exceptionnel De Chanel Intense Volume and Curl Mascara. It is unbelievable, in a totally face-transforming way. Why?  It has a thick yet completely non-clumpy, non-smeary formula and a really amazing six-sided comb/brush hybrid applicator that really and truly coats, thickens and curls every little last lash. I have gotten so many “Wow, are those your lashes?” comments since I started wearing it, I wouldn’t be surprised if the next one was from an adult video producer.

Hook yourself up with some and I swear, you’ll be drinking the kool-aid too (except this time, with better lashes). $28,



Posted by Chelsea on January 11, 2009

While many birds fly south for the winter, The Kaplans bucked tradition (and, you might argue, a little bit of common sense) over the holiday break and made a trip up to New Haven, CT to visit my husband’s brother, Michael, and his family. I don’t have brothers and sisters myself, so I always love spending time with my in-laws, and I especially adore seeing my little guys hang out with their cousins. Michael is eight years older than my husband, so his children are a bit older than ours. Our boys are 3 and 10 months, and his are 12 and 9. Despite the age difference, however, the kids have a blast together.

Prior to leaving on our trip, the weather report predicted that New Haven would be blanketed with a decent amount of snow. Michael called and told us to make sure we bring the kids’ snow clothes so they could go sledding. Snow clothes? Yeah, we live in D.C. No snow clothes for these dudes. We were leaving the following day, so I bolted to the mall in search of snow clothing. Now, keep in mind, I’m from Atlanta, so being put in charge of snow clothing procurement was a little scary. My first stop was the kids’ shoes section of Nordstrom, where I asked the salesman to show me what snow boots are (I kid you not - I wasn’t sure what they looked like. Rain boots? Those duck shoes from L.L. Bean?). They had one pair, so I snagged them for Big Bro. Good ‘ol Nordstron also had a little baby snowsuit in Little Bro’s size as well as a size 3T Columbia snow bibs and a little kid-sized Under Armor turtleneck to go underneath - all of which were on sale (not to mention all matching as they were all gray and black - this pleased me more than the fact they were on sale, admittedly). While at Nordstrom, I ran into Momtourage member Jenny, who advised me to check out Sears, mentioning that they carry Land’s End’s clothing - including the kids’ stuff. Sears? Really? You get, like, washing machines at Sears. Oh no - Sears is my new place for jackets and fleecy things - their kids’ winter clothes were super cute, and all were 40 percent off. While there, I picked up a fleece hat and gloves for Big Bro.

So, when it came time to dress the Big Bro for sledding, I was very excited. We made the decision to keep Little Bro home, thinking it might not be worth it to schlep him out - in retrospect, we should have taken him, as he could have handled it, and he really would have had a blast. Next time, Little Bro, I promise! Here is Big Bro, in all his winter glory:

I bought gloves for him, but apparently kids his age/size need mittens. The gloves are way too big, and he totally looks like Mickey Mouse.Additionally, they are fleece, which gets wet and cold in the snow. Who knew?

Ready to go!

Needless to say, Big Bro had a blast, so all of that last-minute, frenzied shopping was worth it. Here he is having fun with his cousins:

Learning to make a snowball…

..and then learning what happens when someone tosses one at you!

..kinda makes me sad I missed out on all of this fun when I was growing up!

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Posted by Chelsea on January 07, 2009

There’s an article in today’s Washington Post about a 6-year-old boy who after missing the bus, elected to drive himself to school this morning. Sadly, some crap parenting seems to have likely been the precursor. The article says that the boy’s father was under a court order not to leave the 6-year-old and his 4-year-old brother alone with their mother at their home in the town of Wicomico Church, VA. But Dad left for work at 6:30 a.m., and Mom was still asleep when the 6-year-old missed the bus and then drove off at 7:40 a.m. for school. A court order not to leave the boys alone with their mom? Yikes. Fortunately, the authorities are on it: the parents were arrested and charged with felony child endangerment.

Thankfully, the poor kid, who was desperate to get to school so he wouldn’t miss breakfast (this makes me especially sad) and P.E., avoided injury, as did the other drivers he was sharing the road with. He crashed the car into a utility pole and, understandably, was majorly freaked out, but ultimately, fine.

Because the story ends relatively well (moron parents nonwithstanding), I can admit I find it rather hysterical. Especially the boy’s justification for getting behind the wheel:

“The sheriff said the boy told him that he had trained on video games such as Grand Theft Auto and Monster Truck Jam.”

Big Bro, though too young for Grand Theft Auto, is obsessed with monster trucks - especially the kids cartoon “Bigfoot Presents: Meteor and the Mighty Monster Trucks”. Monster Truck Jam video game, monster truck cartoon, what’s the difference? Will he, too, one day hop behind the wheel of my car and send it into motion, certain that he can handle it because of his “training”? He’s enough of a wild man that I’m sorta concerned that the answer is yes.

New Policy in the Kaplan home: television viewing is limited to “Handy Manny” only. 3-year-olds receiving premature training on fixing things: good, 3-year-olds receiving premature training on driving, bad.

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