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opinion

Lessons Learned: 4 days without power

Yes, I was like many New Englanders and others along the eastern shore that lost power in the October snowstorm.  But what shocked us the most was each day we were in denial – this must be the day we are getting our power back right? How long can it last? Growing up I do not remember not having power for so long and I survived the blizzard of ’78!
Here are the top three things I learned while living 4 days without power!

It could be worse – that’s right – our home was still standing –  we were just misplaced (and dazed) for those days, wondering where we would eat and finally after two nights of staying in the house at 43 degree temperatures we had enough. But where would we, a family of 4 stay?  Which leads to my next point…..

People are SO nice and are willing to help– Many people in my community offered to take us in, simply asking, “What do you need?” People welcomed us into their homes, cooked us food and let us have a warm bed to sleep in!

Kids are resilient – Of course while my hubby and I were all out of sorts our kids were having a blast. The first morning they noticed it was cold but then ran outside to play in the snow, followed by lunch and dinner at their friends’ and our neighbors’ house, a big sleepover in mom and dad’s bed and the next day a repeat of that with the addition of no school. It got even better the third day when we were invited to stay over at another friends house and they cooked us dinner! What fun! DID NOT PHASE THEM ONE BIT. Oh yeah they were cold those mornings but were having a blast!

Also, during this time the kids seemed pretty happy (while we, the parents mumbled under our breath about the lack of power!)  There was more family togetherness and really no complaints from the kids at all. But, the hubby still would like to purchase a back-up generator for the just in case…..next time….

opinion

Snow in New England Before Halloween?

Everyone is shocked by the itsy bitsy dusting of snow on the ground before Halloween.  It was a surprise but hey we live in New England so expect anything. Remember the April fool’s snow storm many years back?  As I was digging through the bins of hats and mittens early this morning I thought I am so not prepared as my kids don’t have winter jackets. The kids loved seeing the snow this early and they just wore a sweatshirt and a fleece jacket with some mittens.

As I look out of my window during this Friday lunch hour at the 40 degree mark here outside of Boston I am thinking of recalculating those Halloween costumes!

opinion

Kids and cell phones and usage

Today on WCAP 980 AM we are talking kids and cell phones. How young is too young to have a cell phone? What about a recent study finding that cell phones used in shirts and pants pockets exceed FCC exposure guidelines and that children absorb twice as much microwave radiation from phones as do adults? Does texting lead to no conversations at all anymore?  We are talking kids and cell phones, texting and new technology. Listen in.

WCAP Trendymommies.com interview

opinion

Bad mommy moment

Well we all have them. After a busy day of work I was yelling from my home office for the kids to put on their swim suits for swim team practice (oh,  about a hundred times).  Shuffled them to the car, drove to practice and while in the locker room my seven year old says, “where is my suit?” As I crept closer and checked under her shirt, sure enough no suit on her nor in her swim bag. Ugh! I lost it and yelled and said why didn’t you put your swim suit on as you knew we were HEADING TO SWIM PRACTICE?? I made her go up to her coach and tell her she was going to be late and drove back home, walked in the house and there was the swimsuit on the sofa. She knew I was mad. Now I will pack an extra suit in the car just in case…lesson learned…and I will try not to yell as much.

opinion

Labor Day Weekend – Last Hurrah

Well, this is it- the last summer weekend before we head back to school!  Backpacks, school supplies and a few outfits have been picked out as well as sneakers and sweatshirts have been purchased!

We took our last summer vacation a few weeks ago and it was very relaxing – a week at the beach. Usually we do several day trips to Maine and Newburyport, Mass. but this time we just woke up and walked onto the beach each and every day and didn’t move until we were hungry or had to run to the cottage for the bathroom!

We had lots of visitors, loads of fun and boggie boarding non-stop.  While we really wanted to try surfing again we had to cross it off our list as my 10 year old slipped at the pool the day before we left and had to have two staples in her head! Originally the doctor said no swimming for 7 days (which would have been torture for her!) but my hubby asked if there was any way she could swim in the ocean and he said yes with a swim cap and we had to make sure the area was cleaned every day. So she put on her swim cap, grabbed her boogie board and was trying to be cautious! So now it’s Friday before labor day and I am trying to think of fun things to do for day trips this weekend or maybe just relax? Nah…off to the beach, the pool and a few parties!

A day at the beach

opinion

Last Weeks of Summer Vacation

What’s the plan for the last few weeks of summer for the kids?  Of course it’s back to school shopping but what do you do with the kids these last few weeks? We have been running around like crazy – to the pool, to the beach, to get ice cream, etc.  And yes and of course I have to work during this time as well! Yesterday I conducted my weekly radio interview on the beach (away from my kids and my friends kids) but some people were looking at me funny I think because I was talking loud!

What I noticed is that many of the town camps end the first or second week of August and there are less options as the month closes out. We are on vacation the last week of August so I just have to worry about weeks 2-4!  Sitters are heading back to college so I have to utilize them while I can. Here are a few tips to keep the kidos occupied.

  • While I don’t like them watching TV that much, my 10 year old’s friend got her interested in the Harry Potter movies – she has like what 8 movies to watch to keep up? That should take some time…..Plus after all this running around we need some down time.
  • My neighbor has an almost one year old. They like to head over and “babysit” her for a few hours and I think the mom can get something’s done at the same time!
  • When I have an in-person meeting and/or a conference call it’s daddy time. Luckily his job is flexible so he will take the kids to lunch during these times.
  • Exchange playdate services with a friend. Watch a friend’s kids for a few hours and she can do the same for you.
  • Babysitters can be pricy but many times, especially if you work from home a mother’s helper can keep the kids occupied.  Make sure you talk with the younger teen’s mother about expectations.  Usually at the age of 13 they can start helping.

Enjoy these last few weeks of summer as they are going to fly by!

opinion

B day parties

It’s my baby’s birthday today! Yes my youngest is now 7!  I cannot believe it. My oldest turns 10 on Monday. Since they are both summer babies we usually have three birthday parties – one for each and then a family party with cousins, aunts and grandparents. It is always a busy week for us mid-July. This year I decided to combine the party at one location for both girls – a bowling party. Surprisingly they were all for it (we maybe with a little convincing!) I am still holding the family party.

A few moms and I were talking the other day about birthday parties and when is the age when you stop inviting the whole class and just have a few friends over.  The consensus was about 5th grade.  I am tending to agree. Each year I printed invitations, invited the whole world and stressed over it! I love a nice printed invitation and love putting together gift bags as well. We have had parties at build-a-bear, rock climbing, at the beach, Snip-its, etc.  I also had their parties at the house for a few years which many parents were shocked about. Yes, it was a mess but it’s their birthday! We also had a sleepover for my oldest last year which will probably never happen again – at least not with that many girls.  This year I sent email invitations which my kids were worried, “not everyone has email!”  Who doesn’t have email? (for the record everyone we invited does have email)

Growing up my family did make a big deal about birthdays.  I like to say it’s my birthday week and/or month and celebrate multiple times – why not? It’s never to late, too old or too much celebrating to enjoy your day!

What’s your favorite birthday celebration?

opinion

Happy Summer: mini golf, sandcastles, ice cream, grilling

I have been on vacation and had a lot of catching up to do! Lots of emails, getting back to blog posts and product reviews and I missed a lot on twitter!   Usually it takes me a bit to settle into vacation mode and by the time I am relaxed it is time to go home.  We had great weather on cape cod and lot of beach time and fun activities. We made kites, played mini golf, built sand castles and of course visited our favorite place: Sundae School!

They have the best Sundaes!  Back celebrating the 4th of July we had a family cook out and when we arrived at my dad’s house we had to laugh as this was the grill he was going to use!  Believe it or not my sister had a one time use grill in her car that we used as well. My hubby said it was a great grill to cook on (and he is a grilling expert!) Here is a similar one  here. So if you are in a pinch and need a portable, throw away grill, especially for smores check it out!

opinion

School’s Out…Soon!

The countdown is on….8 more days until…..the kids are out of school!  We are lucky and have a fun transition as we immediately head to our timeshare on the beach for a week.  For some this time of year is a hard transition with questions of what to do and statements of, “I’m bored!”  as some camps have not started yet. My advice is to take a breather! We have been going non-stop with all the activities my kids are in and while they may not sleep late at a young age you can encourage them to linger in bed a little while longer or finish that craft they were working on.

Since I work from home and the kids are in camps part of the summer every bit of time off I have I try to take into consideration that it is their summer vacation. Try to be flexible if you have some time off – ask them what they want to do.  Routine is always good so if you have special trips you take together each summer continue that. We start the summer at the beach and we head to beach again the last week of August. What we do in between is not really planned yet but I am sure it will be fun with my two girls leading the way!

opinion

School’s Out…Soon!

The countdown is on….8 more days until…..the kids are out of school!  We are lucky and have a fun transition as we immediately head to our timeshare on the beach for a week.  For some this time of year is a hard transition with questions of what to do and statements of, “I’m bored!”  as some camps have not started yet. My advice is to take a breather! We have been going non-stop with all the activities my kids are in and while they may not sleep late at a young age you can encourage them to linger in bed a little while longer or finish that craft they were working on.

Since I work from home and the kids are in camps part of the summer every bit of time off I have I try to take into consideration that it is their summer vacation. Try to be flexible if you have some time off – ask them what they want to do.  Routine is always good so if you have special trips you take together each summer continue that. We start the summer at the beach and we head to beach again the last week of August. What we do in between is not really planned yet but I am sure it will be fun with my two girls leading the way!