DON'T Shut Your Mouth

Over the years I've come up with a bunch of silly New Year's Resolutions like drink more water or hang up my coat. Well, this year, I've just got one: Don't stay silent.

Now you might think, "Gee, Jen, I didn't know that you stayed silent on much. You're kind of a ranter and you tend to yell a lot. Are there really things you're staying silent on?"

YES. There are. For instance, when I see someone in public behaving badly, I tend to steer myself away from them, I don't want to get involved, I'm exhausted. Over the years I've begun to feel worn down. I feel like, "What's the point? I'm never going to change anything." Well, it's time to make a scene. It can make a difference. There is a point. It's time to call out bad behavior when I see it. Loudly and clearly. When I witness even the smallest acts of racism or sexism or homophobia or xenophobia or whatever, I will no longer shrug it off and mutter, "Asshole" under my breath and hope that someone else educates them. Instead, I will speak up and I will say, "Hey, that's wrong and here's why."

And when I see blatant racism like this piece of shit JC Penney shopper who ranted like a maniac, I won't stand there silently. I won't listen to an angry, scared old woman yell at Latina shoppers, "Go back to where you came from" and "I bet you're on welfare!" and then ultimately bring it all back to Donald Trump, because of course she did. I will sing Kumbaya and I will ask, "What would Jesus do right now? I'm pretty sure not tell someone to go back to where they came from or speculate how their purchases are being made. Or brag that he voted for a pussy-grabber." I will teach her some facts. Like the United States actually has no official language. And, unless you're a Native American, you're the descendant of immigrants who once came here and probably didn't fit in real well at first. 

How I Stay Stress-Free During the Holidays

Growing up, my mom made Christmas perfect in every way. We had multiple trees decorated with their own themes, Christmas dishes that we ate every single meal on (including snacks), constant roaring fires, delicious smells wafting through the house from her endless baking, and Christmas music blaring from every speaker we owned. My mom made it looks easy. She took her Christmasing very seriously--and still does today. If you don't believe me, check out the video I made that showcases just the decorations in the guest bathroom.

As a child I took it for granted that everyone had a mom that could trim a tree, bake fudge, and wrap a billion gifts in an afternoon with a smile on her face. I thought all moms could do that. Looking back now I'm trying to see if my mom ever uttered cries for help. I don't think she did. I think she is a rare beast who really enjoys all of that stuff.

When Your Kid is More Magical Than You

If you've read Spending the Holidays with People I Want to Punch in the Throat then you know that I accidentally ruined Santa for Gomer a few years ago when he was in fourth grade. It's a long story and you should probably read it, but basically it boils down to I thought he knew, but he didn't know and I blew it.

Cut to now where Adolpha is in fourth grade and showing some definite signs that she no longer believes. HOWEVER, since this is the last child I have to screw up, I refuse to be the one who says, "Santa isn't real." If she's thirty years old and she comes to my house on Christmas Eve hoping for a Dustbuster, I'll give her one. Y'know?

She's been throwing me some serious signs this year that she doesn't believe or that I'm at least being tested. For instance, she refuses to tell me what she's asked Santa for.

My Mom's Christmas Explosion: A Video

OK, so if you've read Spending the Holidays with People I Want to Punch in the Throat, then you know that my mom has a teeny tiny problem with Christmas. She LOOOOOOVES it too much. I've written a lot about her 12 trees, hundreds of Santas, and countless snowmen, but I was getting the impression that a few of you didn't believe me. So, last night I was over at her house (baking Christmas cookies, of course) and I asked her if I could film some of her house for a video. At first she said, "No, it's a mess!" And then she said, "OK, but be sure to apologize for the mess." Fine. Whatever. I apologize.

I give to you, the video of my mom's Christmas Explosion:

If the video doesn't work here, try this link.

2016 Holiday Gift Guide

This week the holiday shopping season begins. May the odds be ever in your favor! If you're like me, you hate to wear pants or see people so don't worry. Everything I've chosen for my 2016 gift guide is available online. You can get everything you need without leaving the house. You're welcome.

Usually I start with the kids, but this year I'm starting with ME! What do I want for Christmas? I really don't have a list of many things I want, so instead, I made a list of all of my favorite things. Yeah, I'm like Oprah, but poorer and less famous and I won't give any of this stuff to you.

Yummie Leggings. If you follow my personal account on Facebook, then you know that leggings were a hot topic for me this fall. Now that I'm writing more and speaking in public more, I actually need some clothes to wear outside of my office. I still want something casual and comfy, though, and that's where leggings come in. I finally found some wide-calf boots that I love and I bought a bazillion pairs and decided to live in nothing but leggings and boots this fall and winter. I wanted a pair of leggings that were thicker than tights, that sucked everything in and held it tight while still allowing me to breathe and move about. This brand does all of that. 

My Faith in Humanity is Restored!

I don't know about you, but the last month or so has been rough. Like, really rough. Like, so rough that I'm not sleeping well, I'm worried all the time, and I can't seem to get happy. Every time I turn on the TV or open my laptop or phone there is more bad news. It can be soul-crushing.

I know I'm not the only one feeling this way and that's why I wanted to write this and share with you the most amazing stories from the last week or so that have restored my faith in humanity.

OK, so I'll start at the beginning.

Adolpha went away for the weekend with my mom and dad and she took a bunch of stuffed animals with her. I don't normally let so many of her furry friends go out the door, but frankly, I was exhausted (see the first paragraph re: stressed out) and I didn't feel like arguing with her. So, off they went. When she returned on Sunday she was frantic because one of her animals was missing. A very small turtle named Shelly. We looked through all her bags and couldn't find Shelly. We called my parents hoping that Shelly had stowed away in their suitcase, but no luck. I called the hotel and Shelly had not been turned in. We had a long talk about how this is what happens when you don't keep track of your important things, blah blah blah. Sure, there were some tears, but nothing major and I thought we were all done.

Gabrielle What's Her Name

I know Gabrielle's real name, but on the advice of legal counsel I'll go ahead and leave out her last name on this post.

I don't know Gabrielle personally, but I sure feel like I do.  Gabrielle used to own the house I currently live in.

Seven years ago, the Hubs and I bought this house when it was a foreclosure.  This was before the big foreclosure boom that's been going on for years now and it was sort of rare to find a foreclosure in those days.

When we bought the house I didn't know anyone who lived in a foreclosure and I felt a little bad capitalizing on someone else's downturn.

I felt like maybe the house was "sad."  (No, actually I was worried the house might be possessed a la Amityville Horror.)  I had nightmares for the first couple of weeks we lived here.  Most of the time I had nightmares about Gabrielle and her family.

The Things MY Kids Think We Do While They're at School

My kids have been in school for a little over two weeks.  They love school.  They can't wait to see their friends, they thrive when they have a routine and they adore their teachers.  I love that they love school, because it makes my job so much easier that I don't have to fight them out the door every morning and they're happy when they get home every afternoon.

HOWEVER, my kids are certain - absolutely certain - that as much as they loooove school, they are missing some good stuff at home.  They are positive that the Hubs and I are having a ton of fun without them.

Here is what they think we're doing all day while they're at school:

The D-Bags Lunching at Taco Bell

I was out running errands with my mom and she told me she needed some lunch. She asked if we could stop at Taco Bell and get something to eat. We stopped at a restaurant with a wonky layout. See if you can follow along: so, you have the main floor where you order your food and there is lots of seating there and then there's this elevated part that holds 15 or so people and they overlook the lower dining area. My mom and I sat in the lower dining area right next to the elevated part where people could look down on us, over the edge.

We're sitting there eating, minding our own business when suddenly a wadded up straw wrapper goes flying onto my mom's food.

"What the hell?" I exclaimed.

With Neighbors Like This, Who Needs Enemies

I was scrolling through my Facebook feed this weekend and I saw a very upsetting status update from my friend Molly at A Day in Mollywood.

Molly came home last week to find this note on her door:

Source: Instagram
It says:


First of all, I have no idea what Molly's lawn looks like, but in my lifetime of having neighbors, I have listened to enough of them bitch about lawns, to guess that Molly's grass is probably a bit shaggy with a few weeds and/or dandelions sticking up in the bushes. I guarantee you that's as "bad" as her lawn is.

I am positive that her lawn is NOT three feet high with a broken dishwasher thrown in there.

I can only imagine how much time this person had on his or her hands to sit down and craft this fine note. Maybe enough time to knock on Molly's door and say something like, "Hi. How are you? I know you've got three little kids and you and your husband have busy jobs, but I noticed that your yard needed some attention. I'm not doing anything right now and I was wondering if I could help you out? Where do you keep your mower?"

A Love Story About a Dude and His McChicken

Source: McDonalds
OK, so I couldn't sleep last night. That happens sometimes. I wake up because I have a bunch of ideas I want to write down, so I get up and I work for a few hours. However, this time I got up and my brain just wouldn't SHUT UP. Only it wasn't a good thing. It wasn't a ton of ideas that will soon be huge bestsellers and then turned into blockbuster films. NOOOOO. It was the worries. You name it, I was worried about it. I covered everything from "What is this lump? Is that cancer? Am I going to be dead by Christmas?" to Syria to Trump to my inability to leave sugar alone to "Did Adolpha get all her reading done last night? And why hasn't Gomer said more than two words to us in the last two days?" to my husband to the electric bill to being irritated that there's a damn moth flying around my office and I can't catch it. Then I worried that I wasn't getting any work done and when would I get my work done and that sent me into a shame spiral and that made me want to eat handfuls of sugar and just go back to bed. But now it's 6 am and this is the time when normal people wake up, so I'm fucked essentially.

PHEW. Did you get all of that??

The Place That Waxed My Eyebrows Today

Today I had some time on my hands and some seriously bushy eyebrows (as I was kindly reminded the other night).  Instead of going to my usual waxing joint, I decided I'd go to someplace a little closer.  I was running errands and I saw a sign for waxing.  I figured I would pop in there instead of driving across town to my usual place.

The sign said walk-ins welcome and I was hoping I could just run in quickly, get the brows ripped, trimmed and tweezed into shape and be on my merry way.

I walked in and I was greeted by what I can only assume was the owner.  "Hello.  How can I help you?"

"Hello," I replied.  "I'd like to get my eyebrows waxed please."  The man looked me up and down thoroughly.  He took in my caterpillar-like eyebrows and nodded in agreement.

PIWTPITT's Top 10 Reasons People are Compelled to Read Top 10 Lists

I read a lot of websites and I'm very competitive.  I want to know what everyone is reading if they're not reading me.  I started looking at what these bloggers were writing that was bringing in so much traffic. Was it their witty prose?  Was it their heart-warming stories of motherhood?  Was it their parenting insights?  Nope.  Not even close.  It's lists.     

The Top 10 _____, Best 8_______, Got to Have 6______, Most Amazing 29______.  These lists are out there on every site.  I know I have lists too, but my lists are not in slideshow format, thus driving up pageviews with each click.  Sneaky, right?  All these websites that are driven by the almighty pageview have started turning every fucking thing they can into a slideshow list.  I get my ass handed to me daily, because I refuse to bow to the pressure to make a 1,000 picture slideshow of the 1,000 Best Indoor Mall Playgrounds in North America. 

Tips for Getting Your Kids to Talk About the Little Things (So They'll Talk About the Big Things)

It's that time of year again when the kids go back to school and they suddenly seem to clam up. What is that all about? We all want to know what our kids are up to and get them talking, but they come home mute and can't seem to remember what they did all day.

Parenting can be so hard sometimes, can't it? Getting our kids to open up and talk to us is hard work! I'm always looking for sneaky ways I can get my kids to tell me what's REALLY going on in their lives, because we all know that when they share the smaller parts of their days, they feel more comfortable coming to us with the BIG things they're dealing with.

I asked my Facebook friends for their best tips and tricks to get their kids to spill the beans and they came through like champs. Thank you for all of the awesome responses!! I want to share them with you, because it takes a village to raise our kids!

Ryan Lochte and His Mom

UPDATE 8/18/16: I wrote this post 4 years ago when I first discovered the douchiness that is Ryan Lochte and his mom. We're wrapping up another Olympic season and once again Ryan and his mommy are in the news. Ryan and his bros went out drinking one night in Rio and came back to the village to tell his mommy that they'd been robbed at gunpoint. Mommy told the media and then all hell broke loose. Ryan told this elaborate story about being in cab that was pulled over by Brazilian police officers. The officers told him to get on the ground and he refused because he had totally done nothing wrong, y'know? But THEN the police officer put a pistol to his head and Ryan was all, "Whatever" and got on the ground. These dudes robbed Ryan of everything except his phone. Leaving the phone always sounded a little fishy. Phones are prime targets in Rio. Kids swipe them all the time. Why would these bandits leave Ryan's phone? Hmmm ... everyone smelled something fishy, but they couldn't quite put their finger on it. Everyone (including the Brazilian government) started questioning the validity of Ryan's story. That's when Ryan bolted faster than Usain Bolt and got the hell out of Dodge -- er, Rio.

While his bros were being rounded up and pulled off of planes for more questioning, the King of Douches tweeted "My hair is going back to its normal color tomorrow." Well, thank the Lord!! We've all been waiting with bated breath for his fucking hair to stop being gray/green/whatever the fuck you call that color. Because THAT'S what's been on all our minds. Fucking vapid waste of space.

NOW it's being reported that the story is fabricated and that there is video of Ryan and his bros busting down a door on a gas station bathroom at the same time this alleged robbery happened. A security guard demanded that they pay for the damage they did to the bathroom and they refused. That's when he pulled a gun on them and then they paid.

Hmm ... interesting. Very interesting.

The plot thickens. I'll be curious to see what happens over the next few days. This should be good. Popping popcorn now.

Back to the original post:

I've said it before and I'll say it again, I've got Olympic fever and I would watch even the most boring Olympics.  But the drama this year just keeps bringing me back!  As one of my Facebook friends said yesterday, "I can't remember a bigger badminton scandal."  Truer words have never been spoken/written.  The humanity!

Aside from the riveting soap opera over on the badminton courts, there is the whole Ryan Lochte vs. Michael Phelps made-for-television rivalry.  My guess is at this point, Michael Phelps just says to Lochte, "That's so cute what you do in the pool.  I've already done it, though, so there's really no competition, you d-bag."

Michael might be the better swimmer, but Ryan is beating him in one area:  looking like a dumbass.

I'm not talking about his fucked up fashion sense where he thought it would be a great indication of his individuality to wear a bizarro $25,000 grill over his teeth when he accepted his gold medal.

I'm talking about an interview his mom gave to "Today" where she told them that Ryan is so dedicated to his sport that he does not have time for a relationship.  Instead, he goes out on "one night stands."  WTF, mom??  That's a good mom right there.  Why not tell the whole world that your son is a slut and can't commit to a woman, but would rather just love 'em and leave 'em?  I hope that Mrs. Lochte is completely out of touch and has no idea what "one night stand" means.  Maybe she thinks that means share a cup of coffee and talk about rainbows and sunsets.  Otherwise, she is an idiot.

If the thought of being simply a notch in Ryan's belt isn't enough to keep you away from this creeper, he gave an interview to Women's Health where he indicated that once you are a notch in his belt, he has no qualms swapping stories with his buddies about how good (or bad) you were.

I think what makes him the biggest ass, though, is that he said he thinks sexy women always "keep a fit body."  OK, I get it.  No one is digging Ryan for his brains either.  Every woman in the world is downloading his pic so we can stare at his pelvis cleavage or whatever you call those protrusions under the belly button but above the shorts.  He's eye candy for us too.  He's obviously pretty to look at, but not very  bright when it comes to his image.  A smart man with millions of adoring female fans around the world should say something like: "A sexy woman is confident and strong with an amazing personality."

Not this guy, he goes straight for the hard body.  It makes me think his mom does know what "one night stand" means.

The other thing that rubbed me the wrong way was Ryan's approach to picking up women.  He makes eye contact and winks at them and then ignores her for a while so he can "keep her thinking" before he's ready to ditch his bros and pick up a ho.  What a fucking dick.  Nothing like a good mind fuck before a decent (I'm not going to say good, because I can't give him that much credit) actual fuck.

Congrats, Ryan.  You get another gold medal.  In douchecanoeing.

If you want to see Ryan in action, you MUST watch this interview with Mike and Sheinelle of Good Day Philly. It gets really funny AFTER Ryan is done. HILARIOUS.

The Hubs' Memory

Tonight the Hubs told me I reminded him of Dorothy Parker.

"Who is that?" I asked. "Didn't they make a movie about her starring Halle Berry?"

"No.  That was Dorothy Dandridge."

I've never even seen the outside of this place, let alone the inside.
"OK, then I don't know who Dorothy Parker was."

Preschool vs. Kindergarten - What to Take, What to Ditch

Recently I saw a list on Yahoo educating incoming college freshmen as to what to take with them to college and what embarrassing items to leave at home because they are too "high school."

You know me, I love a good, informative list of rules, so it got me thinking.  Adolpha moved to Kindergarten this year from preschool and before school started she let me know exactly what was too babyish for her to take to Kindergarten.

1.  Ditch any backpack or lunch box with Dora the Explorer, Kai Lan, etc.  Adolpha has never been into either of these characters, but she let me know that these two girls were O-U-T in the elementary school lunch room.

The REAL Back to School Checklist

School starts tomorrow and Pinterest is on fiiiiiire with helpful back to school checklists, morning routine printables, ah-may-zing lunch tips, and the cutest teacher gift ideas you've ever seen. (Seriously, what sort of brown noser brings a teacher a gift on the first day of school?)

Last night I overheard a bunch of moms talking about how much they had to do before school started. They were sooooooooooooooooooo busy. I looked at my calendar. I've got absolutely nothing on there for this week (other than RUN AROUND THE EMPTY HOUSE NAKED for all day Thursday). I wondered what I was forgetting to do.

The Verruckt

UPDATE 8/8/16: I wrote this post two years ago and I joked around about how dangerous this thing looked. Well, unfortunately, this weekend it happened. Caleb Schwab, a 10-year-old boy, was killed on this slide. No one has said yet what happened exactly, but clearly something went wrong and he was killed. I can't imagine the pain and loss this family must be feeling and I find myself thinking of them a lot lately. Everyone I know joked around about this slide being insane and sadly it lived up to its name. I hope they tear this thing down. I really do. Caleb Schwab was the son of a Kansas lawmaker and he was at the park that day for Elected Officials Day. Apparently, one of the reasons this slide was built in Kansas was due to our lax laws regarding height requirements for this sort of ride. I've also read that our inspection procedures are not as strong as other states. While I feel awful for Caleb's family, I'm hoping that something good might come from his loss. Maybe now Rep. Scott Schwab will work tirelessly to make laws that will protect the children of Kansas in Caleb's memory.

As you know, I live in Kansas and we don't usually have much to brag about. We've got Dorothy and Toto and that's about it. However, over the last year or so we've been all aflutter about the fact that Schlitterbahn is building the world's tallest waterslide here: the Verruckt.

Photo: MidwestIinfoGuide

First World Problems are Hard

My friend, Annie, is really funny and she's always updating her Facebook with silly stuff. The other day she challenged everyone to list their first world problems. I, of course, can't think of any original ideas, so I swiped this one from her.

And Justice for All

Source: The amazing Mary Engelbreit.
I am having a hard time this week. I wanted to write about Alton Sterling, the Black man who was tackled by two white police officers and then shot while they pinned him down on the ground. How the fuck does this even happen? I railed and I cried and I screamed. I wanted to write something, but I felt like a fraud doing so. What do I know about experiencing racism? Not a lot. I'm a white woman living in a very white world. What could I possibly add to the discussion except more noise? Maybe I'll say the wrong thing?

I didn't want to be angry when I wrote about Alton. I didn't want to be accused of being just another stupid, angry bitch who who doesn't know what she's talking about (because we all know that's what some fucking dude will tell me, only when he does it, he'll call me a cunt because that's what angry men call me). I wanted to be articulate and eloquent. I wanted to be exact with my words when I wrote about Alton Sterling, so I kept trying, but nothing came.

Help! My Kids are Turning into Cheap Bastards!

"I think you can get one more wipe out of this, Jen." - the Hubs

Every summer I send my kids to Vacation Bible School (VBS). Every year the church adopts a different charity to raise money and/or supplies for. This year was no different. This year they picked a local charity that offers basic necessities to needy children in the community. Each night the kids were encouraged to bring different items to donate.

My mom usually takes the kids to VBS for me. When she brought them home on the first night, they entered the house deep in a serious discussion.

"He won't do it," Gomer insisted.

My mom replied, "Well, let's just ask him and see."

"You can ask, but I don't think he will," Adolpha said, shaking her head.

"What's going on?" I asked. "What are you guys talking about?"

"Tomorrow is toilet paper day," Gomer explained. "We're supposed to bring toilet paper to donate to the kids, but I told Grandma that Dad will never let us do it."

"Nope," agreed Adolpha. "Dad will say toilet paper is too expensive."

Happy Father's Day!

Today is Father's Day and I should probably write something sappy like the Hubs did earlier this week.

Eh, I don't know that's so not my style, but never say never, I guess.

The kids and I stopped at the local small town Wal-Mart on our way home from camp to buy some Father's Day cards.  I was looking at Father's Day cards at the store and I realized holy crap cards have become expensive.  When did that happen?  My kids kept grabbing 5 and 6 dollar cards!

Especially for my dad.  I don't think he saves any card we give him, so the hell I'm going to spend 5 bucks on a card that he's just going to toss.  Instead, I'll send him an Amazon gift card (note to self: order Amazon gc when this post is finished) and he can buy whatever new spy novel or 1,000 page historical fiction book he would like.  Done and done.

What to Get Your "Lovah" for Father's Day

Father's Day is fast upon us and if you're anything like me, you're thinking ... "Psht, I've got another week or so to find the Hubs something. Maybe a nice tie or some golf balls."

Meanwhile, the Hubs hasn't worn a tie in 15 years nor does he play golf. But it's the thought that counts, right?? I mean Father's Day isn't a big deal like Mother's Day. I don't need to have a whole day set aside for him where the kids and I make him breakfast in bed, complete with adorable home-made cards from the kids with coupons for "ONE FREE HUG," followed by doing whatever it is that he wants to do all day. Do I???

Oh shit, I think I do.

But if I let the Hubs decide what we do all day, he's going to choose something boring like the art museum. Nooo!!! I can't look at another weird modern art installation and wonder "Is that art or did someone accidentally spill something on that canvas?" I have got to get a plan in place before he forces us to pretend to like art all day.

So, I got to thinking. What would I want if Father's Day was Mother's Day? Maybe I could use my wants and desires to figure out the Hubs' wants and desires.

What the BROCK is going on?

"You don't know me, but you've been inside me, and that's why we're here today."

This was the opening line of the statement Brock Turner's victim gave after he'd received a 6 month sentence for sexually assaulting her.

"You don't know me, but you've been inside me ..."

I don't know about you, but those words made me feel a lot of emotions:

More rage
and finally even more rage

Apparently Yellow is the Color of Money

I never enjoyed being pregnant. I never "glowed." I slept like crap and something was always aching, sore, or bulging. After Adolpha was born, I knew I was too damn old to ever do it again.


I've just learned of a new and highly profitable business venture. The catch is, to make any money in this new market you must be pregnant. The profit margins are so high, I'm thinking of coming out of baby-making retirement just so I can cash in on it before the bubble bursts.

What is this hot tip? You ask.

Used positive pregnancy tests. As in peed upon sticks.

Are You Perfectly Imperfect?

It's here! It's here! I'm so excited to share my newest anthology with you!!

There is so much pressure to be perfect, it’s NO WONDER we keep screwing it up. But instead of feeling bad about it, I laugh. I laugh because I know I’m not the only one who has become trapped in a dressing room while trying on Spanx, almost poisoned my family with a Pinterest recipe gone terribly wrong, or tried a new diet aid that resulted in me almost destroying the craft aisle in Walmart. 

Luckily I am not alone. I have managed to surround myself with people who suck at being perfect just as much as I do. Are we perfectly imperfect?????

Idiots on Message Boards

OK, so I get a lot of traffic from smart people on message boards.  People who post things like:  "Funniest blog evah - check it out biotches" or "This is hilarious - MUST read."

I see these message boards pop up in my stats and of course I have to trot over there and see who thinks I'm hysterical.  Mixed in with the lovers is the occasional bitchy individual who has to say something like, "Not very funny IMO." or "She's so whiny and she swears too much.  VERY conceited."

Tonight was a slow night and I started trolling through one of the message boards and all I can say is:  WTF?!  Talk about first world problems.  No, I take that back.  These posters have more than first world problems, these people are just idiots.  There were a few who literally could not wipe their asses without advice from the blogosphere.  Here is a small sample of thread topics I saw tonight and what I would like to respond with just to fuck with them:

The Hubs' Ego

Courtesy: The Hubs
One morning the Hubs and I were watching the news and there was a story about a family fishing and as they were reeling their fish into the boat, a shark came out of nowhere and bit the fish off the line.  They showed the video and the Hubs said, "Ha!  Forget the fish, I'd go after that shark!"

"What?" I said.

Let's Celebrate ALL Moms This Mother's Day

It's Mother's Day this weekend and I've been thinking about all of the mothers that I love to poke fun at. This is the one day of the year when I don't care how you raise your child, because for those 24 hours we are sisters in solidarity. So, I'm wishing every one out there a Happy Mother's Day and I hope you all get what you want.

If I were handing out gifts, these are the gifts that I would give:

Me-Ternity Leave IS NOT the Same as Maternity Leave

This article came to my attention this week and at first I wanted to ignore it, because I'm SOOOOOOO tired of the fucking mommy wars. I'm SOOOOOOOOOOOOOO tired of working moms vs. stay at home moms, breastfeeding vs. bottle, co-sleeping vs. crib, all of it. I'm at a point now where I don't care if you swaddle your baby or let him ride a tricycle without a helmet. I don't care if you feed him GMOs or only bathe him once a week. I don't care if you eat your placenta or chew up your baby's food and spit it into her mouth. (Actually, that's not true. That still kind of grosses me out if I think about it for too long, so if you do that, just keep that shit to yourself.)

Adolpha's Favorite Finger

I picked Adolpha up from school and I heard her ask from the backseat, "Hey Mom, do you have a favorite finger?"

"Ummm . . . no.  I don't think so," I replied as I navigated through the hell that is the elementary school pick up line.

"Really?" she asked surprised.  "'Cause I do."

I figured she'd tell me her favorite finger was her thumb, since she has been sucking it since she was in the womb.  (We've been trying to break her of this habit, so if you have any words of wisdom - don't hold back!)  "Is it your thumb?" I asked.

"No, silly!  A thumb isn't a finger.  It's a thumb!"


Plus Size Women Are People Too

Have you heard about the fight between Amy Schumer and Glamour Magazine? Basically, here it is: Glamour Magazine put out a very special edition (my emphasis) showcasing successful plus size women. They featured ladies like Adele and Melissa McCarthy and they also mentioned Amy Schumer and didn't give her a heads up that she was seated at the portly table.

Welllllll, Amy Schumer got irritated because she's a size 6 and should not be grouped with the ladies of size. She swears she's not pissed that Glamour thinks she's fat, she says she's pissed because she doesn't want her young female fans who have thighs that resemble hers to think THEY'RE plus size. Riiiiiight, Amy.

Amy Schumer is always preaching about how women should accept their bodies and own them, etc., so I don't think she can have it both ways. She can't get up on her pulpit and say, "There's nothing wrong with the size of Melissa's ass, but mine is NO WHERE near that size and should not be grouped with hers." That's some bullshit right there.

Responsibility Starts With Us

As you know, this year I've partnered with as one of their #TalkEarly bloggers.

This is the 25th anniversary of Twenty-five years. Whoa. That sounds like a long time doesn't it? To celebrate, they asked me to dig up a picture of myself from 25 years ago that I could share. My first thought was, "I need to call my mom, because I need baby pictures."

What?? I was an English major in college, not a math major. I'm not so good with numbers ... or aging.

So, here I am. Twenty-five years ago on The Great Wall of China trying to look casual and cool with a hint of mysterious-international-traveler thrown in. I still have the same haircut. It might be time to change my look. Nah, I'll wait another 25 years.

Go Fund Yourself

I am all for crowdfunding for appropriate things. That's the terrific thing about crowdfunding. So many people can come together and with a small investment, make a huge difference. I give to a lot of campaigns. Like medical or funeral bills. You bet. Your house burned down and you lost all of your possessions. Sure thing. A self published book. Of course. A new invention. Sounds great.

It's starting to get out of hand though. A potato salad party. Meh. Whatever. What about your neighbor's senior trip? Yeah, that's happening. A friend received a GoFundMe begging: "Please help Ashleigh end her amazing senior year with a spectacular month long trip to Europe." No.

Placenta Sushi

Image: MorgueFile
Last night I was minding my own business when Karen from Baby Sideburns put up a link to a woman's blog where she describes eating her own placenta. Karen said, "Someone needs to write about this. Jen?" If you know anything about me, you know I'm a little crazy about placenta. I like to make sure that everyone knows about the proper accessory to carry your placenta around the town in. Or if you're more of an eater, I enjoy telling you about how much I love to eat placenta. OK, I really don't. But I do love to watch others eat it.

Nope. That's not true either. I gag a little every time I think about anyone ingesting ANY sort of organ meat, but especially one that many people would consider medical waste. I mean until Gordon Ramsay makes human placenta the secret ingredient on "Master Chef, Jr." I won't consider this delicacy mainstream. Can't you just see Gordon? "All right, young home chefs. You have a mystery box in front of you that contains the ingredient you must all use tonight. Please lift your boxes to reveal ..... YOUR OWN PLACENTA! That's right, young home chefs, years ago we suspected you might be on this cooking show and we asked your mothers to carefully preserve their placentas so that you could create a mouth-watering, delectable dish that I would proud to serve in one of my restaurants! You'll have one hour and all of the ingredients in the Master Chef Jr. pantry to properly season and prepare your placenta. Ready...GO!"

Happy St. Patrick's Day from the Elf on the Shelf?

Happy St. Patrick's Day everyone!!  Did the naughty Leprechaun visit in the night and leave cornstarch footprints or did you did you decide it was better to get up early so you could hit the local Irish pub at dawn for kegs and eggs (remember those days)?

Guess what?  I did not make a Leprechaun Trap.  Surprising, I know.  I decided to reserve my craftiness since I've been warned that I will actually have to make one in a few years as a school project!!  Are you kidding me?!  I can't wait to hear the educational value of that!

I knew there were some OAM St. Paddy's Day shenanigans out there and I wanted to see what I could find.  I was disappointed to see those girls really slacked off on St. Paddy's Day!  I could only find the occasional rainbow cake, a couple of lame traps and recipes for corned beef and cabbage.  With these results, I felt like an overachiever with my plans to serve Lucky Charms for breakfast (no green milk though, I don't think my kids would touch it)!

Don't Poke The Mama Bear

It wasn't the throat, but it was pretty damn close!

Have you heard about the mom with the tantrum-ing kid who punched another woman in the face?

Can you say tantrum -ing? You know what I mean: the kid was throwing a tantrum.

Anyway, here's what happened: the mom is on a checkout line and her kid is having a tantrum and then this chick without a kid asks her to quiet down her kid, because it was bothering her.

She did what????

Yeah, a woman on the checkout line told another woman to shut her kid up! She says it wasn't that bad. She says she simply asked the mother to lower the volume on the kid's tantrum.

Yeah, because that can happen. How many times have you had a kid throwing a fit and the person next to you says, "Could you lower the volume on that nonsense please?" and then you say, "Hey honey, if you could just make your crying a little softer, that would be terrific?" I mean that's what you need, right? Just another interested, caring adult who offers you the solution you were looking for while your child was losing his shit.

This Year I Resolve to Be More Responsible

You might remember that last year I had a partnership with as one of their #TalkEarly bloggers. It was an awesome fit for me and you. The topics I covered got a lot of conversations started and I was so pleased to hear from so many of you. I was very excited and pleased to be asked back again this year! Yay!

In case you have no idea what I'm talking about, is the Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility. Don't worry, they're not the Booze Police. They're not going to tell you to put down your glass or wine or cancel Happy Hour. They just want to make sure that you're drinking responsibly. And the #TalkEarly program is designed to help parents talk to their kids about responsible consumption. I think that's something that we all want to do. Right?

You Can Have My PJs When You Pry Them From My Cold, Dead Body

I don't know about you, but my mornings are a bit hectic. There are two kids who need my constant supervision (ie, yelling) to:

Get dressed - "Didn't you wear that shirt yesterday, Gomer?"
Brush hair - "Adolpha, shaking your head upside down doesn't count as brushing your hair."
Brush teeth - "Adolpha, you have more than enough strength to squeeze the toothpaste tube."
Eat breakfast - "Gomer, goldfish don't count as breakfast."
Pack lunch - "Shoot, we're out of bread again! Everyone's buying lunch today!"
Check backpack for homework - "How did you 'forget' that you had homework to do last night, Gomer?"
Find shoes - "Adolpha, you have easily 10 pairs of shoes. Find a pair on the put them on. NOT flip flops."
Wear a coat - "Yes, a COAT. It's 40 degrees outside, put on your damn coat!!!"
Get in the car - "Let's go, go, go, go! We're five minutes away from the school how are we always late?"

Let's End the Mommy Wars

This video will literally make you laugh and then make you cry.  Not sponsored, just love it.


WTF Files: Random Sh*t on the Internet

I don't know if you've noticed, but I haven't been hanging around the blog much these last several months. It's not that I don't want to, it's because I have to. I've been super duper busy working on a new book. Only this one is taking me a little longer, because it's not a PIWTPITT book, it's my first fiction book. EEEEEK!!! I've been working on it for a long ass time, but it always got shoved to the bottom of my to-do list. I finally decided that this year was the year I'd move it to the top of the list and make it a priority. Even blogging can't get in the way.

BUT ... I couldn't help myself today. See, even though I haven't been blogging much, I'm still keeping up with all the shenanigans on Facebook. I have to have SOME fun distractions while I'm writing. Luckily, my friends on Facebook never fail me. They send me some of the weirdest, freakiest, funniest shit and I wanted to share it with you.

Tooth Monster Dolls - OK, this is probably the scariest thing I've seen in a long time. You know how when your kids lose their teeth and you collect them. What do you do with them? I have a Ziploc bag full of teeth hidden in my sock drawer. I have no idea what I'll do with them. I didn't want to throw them away because they were so sweet, etc., etc., but now I have a bag of teeth in my drawer. Like a serial killer or something. Well, don't worry, Pinterest has come to our rescue. Now you can make a Tooth Monster Doll and glue or sew the baby teeth into the mouth and your child can be too terrified to sleep at night because his new doll has a mouth of gleaming choppers poised to take off a finger or two. Also, what are those eyes made out of????

Christian Bodybuilding Swingers Will Save You

If you've read my book, then you'll know that the Hubs and I had a brush with swingers. I didn't notice the white rock in the yard and even if I did, I didn't know what it meant. (Spoiler alert: swingers like to landscape with white rocks!)

My initial concern that day was that the swingers weren't exactly my type. This made me think that swinging isn't my bag, man. Maybe if they'd been really good looking I might have decided to stay. Who knows?

Adolpha's Obsession with Public Restrooms

A few months ago I told you about Adolpha's close relationship with the school nurse. Well, tonight I noticed that she's got another strange obsession: public restrooms.

The girl hasn't met a public restroom that she hasn't been curious to try. It's ridiculous. Every time we leave the house she must visit the closest public restroom. It doesn't matter if it's a quick run to Target for socks and underwear, she feels compelled to leave them a deuce. If we take a 30 minute road trip somewhere she needs to stop on the way to check out the filthiest Quik Trip.

It's becoming a real problem, because not only does she have to go into these vile places, I have to go too. The girl can't go alone, don't you know.

How Real Men Get Flu Shots

You may remember the Great Man Flu Epidemic of the Punch Household. Before the Epidemic I always got a flu shot and I always made sure our kids got a shot or the mist too, but the Hubs refused. However, ever since the Epidemic, the Hubs has been diligent about getting a flu shot. Even though the Hubs is convinced he needs to vaccinated, he has a real fear of needles and every time he must psyche himself up to get the shot. (Before you ask, he won't do the mist. I'm not sure why, but he's even more opposed to snorting something up his nose than he is to a needle in the arm.)

Don't make me get a flu shot

Today we were out running some errands when the Hubs said: Should we get our flu shots today?

Me: Yes.

Lotus Birth Bags

Alright, so I thought the placenta pills were horrible and the placenta bear revolting, but now there is something worse.

Apparently, it's a thing to carry your days old placenta around in an adorable sack. WTF, placenta lovers?? Can't you people just discard it as medical waste like the rest of us??? Actually, I don't know if this is a placenta lover thing ("The placenta is special and should be kept for all time!") or if this is just one more way to accessorize and/or decorate everything in our lives ("Oh my God, how cute! An ah-may-zing bag for our placenta, honey!!") or if this is a competimom thing:

"I gave birth in a bath tub in my living room surrounded by friends, family, neighbors, three midwives, a Druid Priest, and an astrologer, during a full moon. I delivered in complete silence except for the sounds of the musicians we'd hired to play the pan flute while using only acupuncture to control my pain."

Which Downton Character Are You?

I am a huge fan of "Downton Abbey" and I have spoilers in this post, so if you are not yet caught up, go watch it now and come back. And if you haven't yet seen it. Ugh. Get on Netflix right now and get caught up. You can thank me later.

I missed the first two seasons and had to catch up on DVD once I realized my error. I'm not sure what took me so long. This show is right up my alley:

The Best Wedding Present I Received

Last night I went out with the girls for some much needed girl time (this is different than alone time, Hubs).

My mother's group was getting together to talk about New Year's Resolutions. We went around the table where you hear the usual: lose weight, eat healthy, hang up my coat and then there was Joni. "Spice up my marriage. Rawwr." You might remember her from mom's night out at the gun range. Joni is always good for a laugh and it was especially funny to see her Facebook check in from the day before. We had all seen Joni check in to the local sex shop - right after school.

Overachieving Elf on the Shelf Mommies

By now we have all heard of the adorable little Elf on the Shelf . Almost everyone I know has one.  Some people even have two!  (Now I'...

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