Those Aren’t Your People

I know I said I’d post my TV segment details yesterday, but I have something else on my mind so that’s going to wait.

I recently spent a few days with our friends’ preteen daughters and they had lots of questions, everything from what I was like when I was their age to what I’d change about my appearance. They were so pure and yet so cautious of being judged. It got me thinking back. I once read something to the effect of, if you don’t have a weird friend, you are the weird friend. Continue reading

Sh*t My Kids Say: Fallon/Hilton 2020

Sometimes in the pool we play trivia and the girls (Avery 6 and Savvy 4) take turns “impressing” me with their knowledge while we float around…

Me: Who’s the President?

Savvy: JIMMY FALLON!

Avery: Donald Trump.

Me: And who was president before him?

Avery: Obama.

Savvy: OBAMA!

Me: And who was the other candidate besides Donald Trump? Remember? The woman candidate?

Avery: I don’t know…

Oh wait, yes I do! Celery! Celery Hilton!

Me: What state do we live in?

Savvy: AMERICA!

Avery: Kansas. Duh, Savvy America is where the President lives in the White House.

Me: I think you mean Washington DC.

Avery: Yeah. It’s super far away in Canada.

Me: Um, okay switching categories…What does Bonjour mean?

Savvy: YELLOW!

Avery: It means Hello.

Savvy: THAT’S WHAT I SAID!

Me: How do you say Hello in Spanish?

Avery (high-pitched): Yoo-hoo!

On the way out, Avery took a drink from the fountain and then helpfully notified the children and mother nearby that “This water fountain tastes like martini water.”

So I guess the take-away is that what Savvy lacks in knowledge, she makes up for in supreme confidence, enthusiasm, and volume. And I don’t know what to do about Avery, but I do know that my new alter-ego is a socialite named Celery Hilton who drinks martini water at the pool and calls out “Yoo-hoo!” to greet people Spanish.

Here are some of my favorite pictures from Summer Seventeen so far:

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Actual Things: More Sh*t My Kids Say

Today I had to take Savvy(3) to the doctor with me to get my blood drawn. She watched curiously and asked lots of questions of the nurse. As we were walking to the car:

Savvy: “Mommy, is that nurse going to keep your blood?”

Me: “No, she’ll send it to a lab.”

Savvy *knowingly*: “Oh. Which one?”

Me: “…I have no idea…”

Savvy: “George?”

*This is George: the lab. He is NOT a licensed medical professional. Please do not let him convince you otherwise.

Continue reading

KC Live: Modern Mommy Essentials (Pills, Boobs, Booze + More)

The greatest thing happened to me today. Right before we went live, I was asked to “say something” for the mic check and I got to utter the epic words, “The arsonist has oddly shaped feet…what is your name, Lanolin?” in a real life TV studio.

MM 1MM 2MM 4MM 5MM 6MM 8

Here’s my girl-talk with the amazing Michelle Davidson. Everytime I see her I love her more and today was no exception:

 

Here are the innovative modern mommy essentials from the segment and where to find them:

The Innovation award-nominated mifold is more than 10x smaller than a regular booster seat but just as safe. It’s literally small enough to fit in your purse and therefore perfect for travel and ideal for times when you need to fit three booster seats across!

mi fold Booster Seat

Order the mifold Booster Seat HERE

Nanobébé Breastmilk Bottle. Launching in the US now and also up for an Innovation Award, this is the first bottle specifically designed to protect breastmilk nutrients and allow the baby to start self-feeding at an earlier age. This bottle cools breastmilk 7x faster than standard bottles, preserving more nutrients. It also warms 2-3 times faster so you can quickly feed your crying baby without destroying any of the good stuff you worked so hard to pump!

nano bebe breastmilk bottle

Order the Nanobebe HERE

Vitasome’s Curcumin-C & Glutasome have energy-boosting turmeric which is a natural anti-inflammatory and promote healthy skin, diminishing the signs of aging (YES!) What’s so different about these supplements is the patented liposomal delivery system. Liposomes surround the nutrients until they penetrate your cells where they’ll have the most benefit so the nutrients are never mistaken for waste.

 

 

Order Vitasome HERE

The Nugeni Steva + is an all in one, easily interchangeable handheld vacuum (cordless and upright), steam mop and a mobile steam cleaner. You can even use it to steam clothes! The steam kills 99% of bacteria so you don’t need to use any harsh chemicals.

Nugeni Steva Accessories

Order the Nugeni Steva + HERE

 

Let’s Be Alone Together.

Overall, it’s been a good week. But I detected the fumes of Mommy burnout yesterday.  I’m tired.  I’m tired of riding the waves of feeling suffocated and having the craziest biggest love wash over me when I see my girls’ little teeth as they giggle at something I say. Avery has already lost so many of her baby teeth and each one feels like a kick in the gut. Like all those nights we spent together walking around the living room in the glow of the TV because she was teething and only wanted to be rocked have come full circle. I felt so desperate and alone just doing whatever I could to coax her to sleep.

The first week we brought her home from the hospital I laid awake in terror picturing this giant digital clock counting down the 18 years until she leaves us. I still find myself exasperated with each little sign of my kids growing up. All of a sudden their legs are so long. Their oh-so-kissable cheek meat is disappearing. I’m so grateful that I get to watch them grow, but I have this gnawing feeling that it’s all going too fast. Like I’m one of those Russian nesting dolls and the smallest one is constantly in the middle of a crazy desperate meltdown, but the dolls in between us are chill and keep the little panic-stricken one mostly medicated, er,  insulated so my outer self can function.

Sometimes little voices calling “Mom!” sound like nails on a chalkboard. Sometimes I get tired of carrying around all of the dandelions they pick for me. And I feel so guilty. I know that time is flying by and I will long to hear their tiny voices, have them fall asleep on top of me, and I’ll look at dandelions and wish someone cared enough about me to pick them for me. A friend recently sent me an article that said “we’re not meant to parent for this many hours a day,” and some days it feels so true. It’s so much pressure being the person they love and hate the most. The one they treat the best and the worst.

Years ago I attended a Junior League luncheon where Hoda Kotbe told a story about when she had just been diagnosed with cancer and didn’t want anyone to know, and someone said to her, “Don’t hog your journey. It’s not just for you.” It resonated. We all have different challenges in parenting and different degrees of tragedy we have to endure, but each of our journeys are valuable to one-another and should be shared, considered and appreciated.

Now it’s Friday night. I bathed my kids, picked up toys and dog poop in the playroom, sprayed some cleaner on the carpet, then sprayed some self tanner on my ghostly white skin. Here I sit in bed, typing around the sleeping child draped across me. The glow of Octonauts on TV and the computer screen are the only light in the room. Avery is off in her dreams and I am off in my thoughts, but we are alone together.

Avery and Mommy

“GEORGE WASHINGTON DIED IN HIS OWN BED!”

I spend most hours of my life with my kids. And they like to run their mouths gab. Whenever they say something worth remembering, I use Facebook as a lazy-ass modern alternative to a traditional baby book so I can capture the moment, well, in the moment.

Emily Kuhlman and Daughters

Here are some actual conversations I’ve captured with my children Avery (5) and Savvy (3) lately:

*Picking up the girls from school*
Me:”How was Teddy Bear day at preschool?”
Savvy: “Good. I saw a wiener.”
Me: “Excuse me?”
Savvy: “I just kidding!”
Me: “Why would you even tell Mommy that?!”
Savvy: “Wieners are so funny!”
*a beat of silence as I debate whether or not to admit I agree*
Avery *flinging the car door open whilst shouting like a doomsday prophet on a street corner): “GEORGE WASHINGTON DIED IN HIS OWN BED!”

Naturally the members of my family now enjoy shouting this out at random.

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*Overheard*
Avery: “Savvy, if you don’t behave we’re going to sell you to the market for pork.”

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Avery: “Do bunnies smell good?”
Me: “I don’t know, I’ve never smelled a bunny.”
Avery: “No. Like, do they have a good sense of smell? Why would you smell a bunny?”
Me: “I don’t know. I thought it was a strange question.”

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*Savvy and I at McDonald’s, both wearing Ugg boots.*
Old lady with white hair (talking to Savvy): “What happened to your forehead??”

Savvy: “It’s a birthmark.”

Old lady with white hair (to Savvy): “I knew a little boy with one of those and they had to cut it off his face! Well you’re a pretty little girl anyway. I like your boots!” *looks at me* “Those Ugg boots only look good on children. And they are way too expensive.”

Savvy: “I had a grandma with white hair but she’s dead.”

Normally I call her out on all of her egregious lies, but I let this one slide.

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*Our pomeranian Mr. Biffles nips Avery on the ankle.*
Avery (*shouting down at the puppy and gesticulating wildly): “I DON’T WANT TO BE COVERED IN BLOOD FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE!”
Me: “He’s six pounds and his teeth are smaller than grains of rice. Settle down.”
Avery (completely calm): “I know. I was just warning him to make a point.”

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Savvy: “Guess what my skin is made out of…”
Me: “What?”
Savvy: “Glorious meat.”

This has prompted me to start proclaiming things like, “THE GLORIOUS MEAT HAS RISEN. THE GLORIOUS MEAT DEMANDS WAFFLES.” My new goal in life is to write her wedding announcement for the newspaper with the line, “…and the bride wore glorious meat.”

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Me: “Where’s your little sister?”
Avery *casually*: “Oh, you know.”
Me: “No. I don’t know.”
Avery: “She’s in the family room relaxing in a giant turtle shell I made out of toys and trash.”

I took one fifteen minute shower, people

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My parents’ dog Annie died last year and since they live on a ranch in the country, they buried her in a corner of the yard and planted some lovely flowers. My mom walked the girls over to show them that they could come visit Annie’s grave whenever they missed her.

Avery: “So Annie’s actually in there?”

Mom (*delicately tiptoeing around discussion of the afterlife): “Well, yes, but her spirit isn’t there, it’s only her body.”

Avery: “Just her body?”

Mom: “Yes.”

Avery: “No head?”

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And last but not least, probably one of the darkest days in dog-shaming history:

Dog Shaming

 

 

“At first I didn’t want anyone to know how he left this world.”

Mood: Ripple by The Grateful Dead

I’ve blogged candidly about my struggles with Anxiety disorder. The goal is that whoever reads it comes away with  more compassion for Invisible Illness, which is why I’m sharing this post with you now.

Preface: I’m the baby of my siblings by many years, so I’ve been an Aunt since I was 9. I know other Aunts love their nieces and nephews, but somehow I just know I love mine more.  Like, don’t fight me on this. So when my oldest nephew Koltie-baby was home from college for Christmas a few years ago and said he wanted me to meet a girl named Brooke, I was cautiously optimistic.

Now it’s years later and I love our Brookie so much I think of her as one of our own.  To put it in perspective, the first time she stayed over at my house for a couple days I casually asked her what color she wants me to wear to her wedding.  I basically just want to squish her cheeks and tell her constantly that she is magical and I shall be her Crazy Aunt for all time.

Brooke at game

Brooke and Koltie

Brooke with fam

Brooke Beach

*I’m obviously the one in the Mom-Jean shorts.

About a year ago her parents were in town for a volleyball tournament so I went with my sister to “meet the parents.” I had my two children in tow and immediately pegged the happy, margarita-drinking couple from Texas as Brooke’s parents, David and Erin. David bought me a beer and we dove into conversation as I was internally surprised at how our shy “Brookie-Barbie” (as my children call her) had spawned from such an outgoing, charismatic dude. We spent a couple of hours drinking, eating, and talking. My kids ended up on Erin’s lap. David was the quintessential proud, genuine family man from Texas, complete with corny Dad jokes. There was never a lull in conversation and they both hugged me tight when it was time to leave. I love that my Koltie-baby picked a girl from such a fun, close-knit family filled with love and laughter.

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A few months later the unthinkable happened. Continue reading