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In the slightly altered words of Andy Cohen, here’s what six things we’re obsessed with today:
1. Jaymi is the Queen of the Hustle, got Christine hooked on all the Micro Hustles and now you don’t have to just believe us. Believe our friend over at Baby Costs Money. After all, she’s legit tracking how much it costs to raise her toddler. (And yes, it’s horrifying). So if she’s celebrating Jaymi as a hustler? Well it’s pretty official.
2. Christine is gearing up for her #Momsquad cruise by grabbing herself some new sunglasses. Jaymi turned her onto EyeBuyDirect.com and now Christine is obsessed. And the proud owner of two new pairs of sunglasses. Check them out and get $10 off your order when you use this link! And stay tuned – Christine will show off her new shades when they arrive!
5. The Turndown. Do you watch these guys? Because they have basically videotaped every conversation Chad and Christine have ever had in bed. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, just click the link and do it now.
6. Monday is a holiday which means the kids’ schools are closed (BOO!) but one of the Daddies has the day off work (YAY!) Also….sorry Jaymi…. What are you doing to celebrate/survive this bonus day off?
3. Christine FINALLY started using the Kmart Hacks we told you about, and now she is as excited as Jaymi is. I mean, just LOOK at all the stuff she got this week- for $6 TOTAL!
4. We started a Health and Wellness challenge with our friends that has us very hungry, but very motivated. Of course, it also involves the chance to win some cash, so you can see why we of all people would be VERY motivated.
5. Jaymi got a new Felt Board, and she loves it SO MUCH. It’s revolutionized our Instagram account, so if you’re not following us yet, now is a good time to start!
6. We booked our next #MomSquad cruise and we COULD NOT be more excited. We lived our version of our best life by celebrating with cheap blue drinks at the bar at Applebees. As one does. Cheers!!!
1.This article our friend Ruth wrote last year for Kveller.com, because she’s absolutely a big deal and an amazing writer, and we are the jerks that called her out on her advent calendar, but we love her and her honesty about raising an inter-faith child.
3.This mug from Amazon, because it speaks to us in the most basic of ways, and speaks all the truth.
4. This Brown Sugar Cookie recipe from Sally’s Baking Addiction, because sometimes you sign up to make three dozen cookies for the homeless and then you forget you ever signed up until the coordinator texts you to arrange pickup and you didn’t buy any ate all of the Christmas cookie ingredients you had purchased but thank GOODNESS you always have the ingredients needed to make these. And they are INCREDIBLE.
5. Playdates with our friends, because they give us LIFE. We highly recommend you invite all of your friends over immediately, and make everyone a latte, and don’t clean at all, and just relish some girl talk while the kiddos entertain each other steal each other’s crackers and push each other, but at least you got time with your friends and that’s what matters.
6. The Mensch on the Bench, so that people of all faiths can suffer through the insanity of moving a little figure around their house. Happy Hannukah!
Of all the back-to-school posts that I’ve read (and pinned. And obsessed over), the one thing that no one ever told me is that it would bring on the advent of weekends again.
For the last three years, I have been engrossed in the life of a stay at home mom. Yes, weekends were different in that my husband was at home, and I had a full-time parenting partner, someone to laugh with, someone to talk to. But so much of the weekend was just the same as the rest of the week for me. I was cleaning house, and watching kids, and hitting up the park, and cooking dinner. These are all things that I signed up for, and not even things that I particularly mind. It was just that they were everyday things, Monday through Sunday, and every day was much like the one before it. Sometimes that was a good thing, but sometimes? It wasn’t.
And then came school, and suddenly Fridays had so much more meaning. We’d survived a week full of rushed breakfasts school drop offs and homework and packing backpacks! Now I’d get two whole days to spend with my girl! Parks were a novel thing again, lazy mornings watching TV on the couch were a treasure instead of something to feel guilty about, and our pace was just DIFFERENT. She was tired from a full week of school, and ready for some downtime. Where the weekends used to be full of sameness punctuated by birthday parties, suddenly we were all looking forward to a little rest, a little less structure, and a little more free time to spend together. I finally remember why Friday used to be a thing, why everyone talked about weekend plans, and how the promise of two perfect days is enough to get anyone through a stressful, boring, or even just a normal-old-week.
So here we are, and I’m fully ready to open up my arms and embrace the weekend again. Take time to rest, to drink an extra cup of coffee, to snuggle up and watch some cartoons, and to not worry about rushing out of the door to get to school on time. I’ll stay up late with my husband, and the kids might actually sleep in, and we’ll play and laze about and spend Sunday evenings getting ready for the week ahead. It may not be everyone’s ideal weekend- heck, it may not even be mine- but whatever it may look like, I’m just glad to have it back.
It seems that every other weekend or so, my husband gets it in his head that we NEED something from Costco. A part of me seizes up inside because carts and samples and hot dogs and toys and clothes and so many things for the kids to ask for and so many places for them to get lost! Another part of me knows that I CANNOT send my husband alone because he will come home with a new TV, 96 beers, a giant tool chest, a squatty potty 2-pack and a gallon of potato salad. He will spend $800 and will not get the paper towels we were going for in the first place.
One might think, take a page from Jaymi’s playbook! Divide and conquer!! Check things off your list, girl! And I admit, that sounds good. But somewhere along the line we got into the habit of just being together all weekend. Even if that means five of us strolling through Costco trying not to lose each other. And for me, after five days of braving the day to day parenting alone, I want to attach to Chad like a barnacle and have him there to help deal with any tantrums, freakouts, blowouts, accidents, or injuries.
So most Saturdays, after our family breakfast, we drive through the car wash (another family favorite) and then head to Costco. We’ve gotten it down to a bit of a science, so here’s what works for us – including a couple tips I KNOW you’ll love!!
Don’t be shy about the samples.
I used to be so embarrassed to hover by the samples and get enough for Chad and the kids. No longer. I proudly announce that I’m with an entourage and take however many samples I need to survive until we get to the next aisle. Maybe even one for the road. It’s easier than having my kids throw a fit in the middle of the store. And guess what? No one cares! Except maybe the other people hovering waiting for free food, but guess what? I waited my turn patiently (I’ll turn into the sample police when it comes to waiting your turn) and they can wait for theirs. There will be more. Grab your stash and carry on.
Set limits about toys/books/craft supplies early.
My kids go ape-shit for the books and toys at Costco. And they often have giant bins of some sort of crafts for sale. Unless you want eighty thousand puff balls and 40 baggies of glitter all over your house, set limits before you even get out of the car. I like to tell the kids they can get a book just to keep them happy. In our house we will (almost) always allow books. And a book or two is better than listening to my kids cry desperately for a GIANT BEAR THE SIZE OF MY CAR. We always give the bear a hug though. I’m not a monster.
Ask the cashier for an extra receipt.
Yeah, you heard me right, your kids do NOT have to fight until the end of days over who gets to carry the receipt to the door and get a happy face. If you ask nicely, your cashier will print out a little extra paper so that each kid has their own!! This was maybe one of the most life-changing parenting tips I have ever received. So you’re welcome. Now, if your kids are like mine and decide to try to make the person working the exit play Pictionary with them I do not have help for you. But I do know sometimes they’ll draw a fish if you ask nicely.
At the food court – ask the cashier to cut your pizza slice in half.
You know how the pizza slices at Costco are HUGE and your kids each want one and refuse to share? So you end up asking for a plastic knife and hacking through the thing like a bad slasher movie? No need my friends! If you ask, they will straight up slice your piece in half. AND give you an extra plate. You just gotta slide that over real stealth like and your kids have their own slice. I know. Life changing info here.
So yes, doing all the things as a family can be intimidating, but with a few tricks and tips, I promise it’s not as miserable as it sounds. And if it all backfired on you, the iced mocha at the food court isn’t half bad. You earned it.