Your blogging questions answered – PART I


questions-about-bloggingI decided to do a fun thing over the 4th of July holiday weekend and put a post up on Facebook and Twitter with the chance to ask me any blogging question. I was floored by the response. I had dozens upon dozens of questions!

Let the record show – I am NOT a blogging expert. I simply have been at it for about two years and have learned a few things along the way. The one piece of advice I tell everyone is this: Be authentic. Write about something that matters to you. For some that might be couponing and for others it might be poetry. Just be authentic and the audience will come.

With that said, I have picked up a few tips and made a plethora of mistakes that hopefully I can spare others from making. I’m taking the questions and dividing them between two posts. The second post will come next week. And if you see your question wasn’t selected, it simply means that something like it was asked already.

Here we go!

1. Sami from Yours, Mine and Ours: How do you come up with content?

I am a storytelling blogger. There are those who are reporters and those who are storytellers. Neither is right or wrong – just different. So for me, writing is natural. I’m telling you the stories from my life – even the ones that will require therapy for my kids later in life. The key to content is to make sure you stick to your niche. If you write about parenting, don’t suddenly become a political writer on your blog. It’s okay to throw a few of those in every now and then, but stick to your niche.

2. Kathy from My Dishwasher’s Possessed: Short of offering sexual favors (which I don’t think will get me very far) how do you significantly increase your traffic?

Well I’ve seen ya and you can definitely make some cash on the side – let me tell ya. :)  Seriously though, blogging is a community. The key to growth is to give back to the community. That means, guest blog on other sites and have folks blog on yours. When you want to guest blog on someone’s site, put together a strong post that either makes people laugh, pulls at their heartstrings or teaches them something. Then, let that bigger blogger know how you are going to promote it. Don’t approach a big blog without a post already written and ready to show them.

Also, I can’t say enough about Twitter and Pinterest. They are great ways to get readers. The key is to stay active and always find new avenues. For example, if you write about fashion, don’t just follow fashion bloggers – follow folks who write about parenting, science, etc… No one is just interested in one thing, even if they have a niche. Readers can come from anywhere.

3. Jennifer from Another Jennifer and JD Bailey from Honest Mom: What is your best time management tip for blogging?

The best advice I heard was to create office hours for yourself. If you view it like a job, treat it like a job. With that said, don’t get obsessed with how often you should post. Post whenever you have something to share. Have a goal but if you don’t hit it, it is okay. You have to live life to write about it, right? Even if that life is about cleaning Goldfish crackers off your ass, like mine is most days.

4. Christine from The Mom Cafe:  How do you use Pinterest to gain more followers?

Pinterest is the second biggest referrer for my blog. When I realized that, I started to put more effort into my pins. I don’t use pictures with every post so I had to learn how to make text posts. Actually, those usually do big traffic for me. I use PicMonkey to do all my pins and pictures. It’s free and basically a monkey can do it, so it is perfect for me. Make vertical pins. Also, pin throughout the day and not all at once. And the key – follow others that you enjoy and they will probably follow you. Make a board that is different from what you see on there. For instance, I have a board called “Rooms My Son Would Ruin“…

5. Susan from Pecked to Death By Chickens: What are your 3-5 favorite sites to submit your writing?

This is a tough one. It depends what I’m writing. I’m a freelance writer so I write all kinds of things! I will say, I loved being featured on some big blogs, but it’s the smaller ones that mean the most to me. Bloggers starting out who reach out and want to do a fun post or something together. I love that. So sorry – I don’t have 3-5 favorites per say – depends on your niche. However, don’t put all your eggs in one big basket. Remember, a smaller blogger still has followers – a few smaller bloggers will probably get you more true, dedicated followers than one big one.

6. Jennifer from The Runaway Mama: How do you handle writer’s block?

I walk away. I’m totally serious. I get up, I leave the house, I stop ignoring my children and play with them. Okay, I probably don’t actually play with them but rather watch them play as I check People.com on my phone. But the truth is that absence makes the heart grow fonder. Every time I have taken a break, I’ve come back with an idea – whether it has been 10 minutes or 10 days later. Give yourself time to live life in order to write about it.

7. Renee from A Baker’s Dozen and Apollo XIV: Do you plan/schedule posts or verbally vomit?

Holy moly, do you really have 14 kids? Wow. I seriously bow down to you. But to answer your question – I do both. I schedule if it is a guest post or something I wrote that fits a world event/ holiday. Usually, though, I spit it out on the spot. I write when I want to write – simple as that. Now that’s not the case for my professional freelance clients – for those, I have deadlines and such. But for this blog, I’m all about authenticity. If I say it happened yesterday, it happened yesterday.

8. Robyn from The Coolest Mommy: Do you have a tool to help you track and follow back people from your Google + and Pinterest?

Nope. Every few weeks, I go through and look at who follows me and decide if they are a good fit for me to follow back. Very simple and basic, I know. But I don’t want to follow someone just so they can follow me. What good does that do if we don’t actually read each other’s stuff?

9. Parri from Her Royal Thighness: Is it OK to use a picture from a TV show or movie on your blog?

First of all, I seriously love your blog name. Hilarious. Secondly, NO! NO! NO! You definitely can’t use a picture from a movie or TV show on your blog. Every picture you put on your blog has to have given up their rights and allowed you to feature them. Here’s a great article about what pictures you can and can’t use.

http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/copyright-fair-use-and-how-it-works-for-online-images/

10. Robyn from Dim Sum and Doughnuts: Are there any topics you try to stay away from?

Yes. When I started writing, I agreed that I would never say anything negative about my parents and my husband. Not that I would have anything negative to say, Mom, I promise.

I try to write in my niche most times. Every once in a blue moon, something will seriously piss me off in the world and I’ll have to comment, but mostly, I try to make a person either laugh or cry with every piece I put out. Hopefully both. It’s a good day when I can do both.

Ok folks, thanks for the questions. I’ll do the next set next week – stay tuned!

 

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The great nipple conversation…


Here’s the conversation that just happened in the car with my five-year-old daughter. I like to think of it as one of those diversity education conversations.

We were going through the drive-thru at McDonalds (don’t judge, people, it buys me at least 30 minutes of peace in my house) and the cashier said to the girl working next to her that she was going to take off her long sleeve shirt that she had underneath her uniform after she rang us up.

As we pull away, my daughter whispers, “Mommy, I hope she went into the bathroom to take her shirt off.”

Me: “Yes, sweetie, I bet she does. Why are you whispering, though?”

Her: “I didn’t want her to hear me talking about her boobies.”

Me: “Oh, right. Wait. You weren’t talking about her boobies.”

Her: “I was thinking about them.”

Me: “What were you thinking about them?” (my curiosity was now at it’s highest peak)

Her: “Well. Uhm. What do you think black boobies look like?”

Me: (trying desperately not to laugh) “Well, sweetie, they are black.”

Her: “Even the pimple?”

Me: (now having a terrible time trying not to laugh) “I think you mean nipple?”

Her: “Yeah, the nipple. Is that black too?”

Me: “Yep. Just like ours are all white.”

Her: (looking disappointed) “Oh.”

Me: “Why? What color did you think the nipple would be?”

Her: “Purple.”

 

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The infomercial you HAVE to see… HILARIOUS!


Every night after we put the kids to bed, my husband and I make ourselves a warm cup of tea and talk about the politics of the world while we read each other poetry.

Okay, that’s total crap.

We make a cocktail, pull up the ottoman and plop ourselves down in front of the TV while we tweet and check Facebook. It’s very romantic.

So last night, as he was flipping the channels, my husband stopped and started hysterically laughing.

I looked up from my incredibly witty tweet I was getting ready to send and almost spit out my drink.

It was an entire channel dedicated to selling adult toys. Basically, the QVC of vibrators.

I had to record a few minutes and share it with you all because there are so many funny elements of the few seconds we watched.

There’s the hilarity of both women wearing business suits to talk about sex toys. It might be the least erotic way to sell a vibrator.

There’s the insanity of what this actual toy looks like.

The weird thing the one woman is doing with her fingers every time the other woman says, “two.”

And then there’s my favorite part. When the one woman says, “Wow!” You can actually hear my husband and I laughing because I couldn’t listen to it without cracking up. I now can’t ever use the phrase “fully customizable” without picturing them…

You have to see it to believe it. Go see it now.

Click on link below to see it on my YouTube channel – which I actually just created to post this.

Hilarious Adult Toy Commercial

There you go – there’s my 4th of July patriotic present to you. Don’t say I never gave you anything…

 

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The thong that made me pee my pants laughing…


I seriously have the world’s best readers. Honestly, you guys are hilarious. So a few days ago, one of you sent me a link to this newly invented thong and asked my thoughts on it.

Warning: It’s a picture of a thong so if you are working at some place like a church rectory or worse, Congress, you might want to click on it from home.

https://www.cstringdirect.com

I can’t post a direct picture because I don’t have the rights to do that, but trust me, click on the link and you’ll see why I almost peed my pants when I saw it.

After looking sideways at the screen for awhile to figure out how it really worked, I made a few observations.

Observation #1: Those women are totally faking those smiles. There is no way that a wire up their butts evokes that kind of happiness.

Observation #2: I am quite curious why Arizona, California and Oregon jumped aboard carrying them as compared to other states. Is there a direct correlation to which states are now legalizing marijuana?

Observation #3: You seriously must read the testimonial. I can honestly say I’ve never walked around wondering if people are going commando or not. Am I in the minority here?

Observation #4: All the models are touching their hair because they are secretly ripping it out from the pain.

Observation #5: What happens when you go through an airport metal detector?? That is seriously going to make that TSA agent’s day…

What’s your thoughts? Would you wear it? 

19 Comments

My Disney Experience…


So did you think Walt Disney imagined creating a place where parents would come home from visiting it and need another vacation to recuperate?

Holy mackeroli – I’m exhausted.

Going to Disney World is truly an acrobatic experience. You are balancing ten thousand things all at the same time, while praying your kid doesn’t have a meltdown or worse yet, ask for another snack.

You vigorously adjust Fast Pass selections while maneuvering your larger than life stroller around people eating turkey legs with their bare hands. And you curse the day that you told the kids you would go on the Mad Hatter Tea Cups with them.

But then, you stop. And you look up and see Cinderella’s castle and then look over at your daughter.

And it is all worth it.

It was an incredible experience to see how much joy she got from hugging a princess. To see how excited she was if she spotted one to sign her autograph book. I loved seeing her thrill when she tried a new ride or holding her tight when she felt nervous.

And each night, I would pass out in bed harder than I did on my 21st birthday after singing “Like a Virgin” on a cocktail table.

If you follow me on Facebook, I posted a nightly update of my observations from Disney World. Here’s a few highlights:

Observations about Walt Disney World

1. There is truly nothing better than watching your 5 year old daughter meet princesses for the first time.

2. There is truly nothing better than watching your 2 year old son check out the boobs of every princess.

3. Fast Pass is the way Disney tells regular wait-in-line people F.U. in the most magical way possible. It makes me feel guilty yet also have a strong desire to say “Suck it suckers” as I walk by the sweating guest waiting in line.

4. Whoever recommended the Mohito slushie in Epcot should be given the highest award freakin’ possible. Brilliant.

5. River Rapids is a ride that makes people participate in wet T-shirt contests that should absolutely not be in wet T-shirt contests. Myself included. I apologize to all the eyes that walked by me and had to see that view. I wished my shirt said “I had two kids – do not look directly into the chest.”

6. There should be a service that is offered at 2 pm in the Magic Kingdom for all parents who have a toddler peacing out. The person would come, take them out of your arms, hand you a beer and then walk away with your child. They would return them two hours later with a happy kid and a trash can for your empties.

7. I should have paid attention in Geography class because I have no clue how to answer any of the questions my daughter asks me about the countries in Epcot. I just keep telling her to google it and eat more croissant.

8. You realize what a truly horrible person you can be when someone cuts in front of you and you start saying, “Hey, what the heck? We’ve been waiting here for 40 minutes” – only for them to tell you that they are the kid in front of you’s mother and she’s bringing him his inhaler. Awesome. I’m quite a role model for my kid at that moment.

As for pictures – here’s a few of my favorites…

picking-wedgie

It seems that meeting Mary Poppins gives my daughter a wedgie…

 

checking-out-jasmine

My son truly appreciated Jasmine’s “magical gifts”…

 

gang-of-toy-story

We waited on the longest line to meet Woody & Jessie for my son who adores them, only for him to not give a crap because he couldn’t stop looking at the guy next in line who was eating the ice cream he wanted.

 

the-peace-out

What happens when you don’t buy him the ice cream and he screams bloody murder for twenty minutes until he falls asleep and everyone walking by comments how cute he is. FU guy in line eating ice cream. FU.

 

belle

But just when you are ready to lose your mind and jump into the creek with Tick Tock the crocodile, this happens. She finds Belle and there’s no line. Now THAT is truly magical.

 

 

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Do they give you a flask when you walk through the entrance gates of Disney World?

pic-of-castle-disneyTomorrow is the day. The day my family has been waiting to happen for almost a year. It’s the day we go to Disney World.

When my daughter was three, we told her an awesome lie that has served us very well. We told her that Disney World requires everyone to be five years old to go. Now if you are over five but your sibling is not, that’s okay, they can come in with you. But the main kid has to be over five.

And this worked like a charm.

Until she turned five.

So now we are holding up our end of the bargain and going to Disney World. And honestly, against my usually bitter sarcastic New Yorker self, I’m actually pretty damn excited. I’m not the most excited for the rides and attractions. I’m not even the most excited for the pool and tan I hope to get.

No, the thing I’m most excited is to see that moment of awe they will have when they see everything. I can’t wait to see their mouths open, their smiles filling their faces, and the utter disbelief of what’s happening around them.

Of course, I can totally wait for the meltdowns, insane heat and people who walk around in clothes that are much too small for them. Why does the heat make people want to squish their asses into tight clothing? I wish we lived in a society where togas were appropriate in Florida.

But in the end, here’s my hope. I hope that when I walk through the gates of Disney World, the attendant hands me a set of ears and a flask with Mickey Mouse on it. If that happens, it would truly be the most magical place on Earth…

So wish me luck, people. I’m going in. If you don’t hear from me for a few weeks, send help. And by help, I mean a babysitter, a stack of People magazines and a fruity drink with an umbrella in it. Thanks in advance…

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My dad. He’s simply the best.


dad-and-danielle-herzogMy dad takes a lot of crap in our family. We make fun of his terribly corny jokes. We tease him about his constant need to photograph every living creature, animal and plant. And we harass him about his obsession with all makes and models of computer gadgets.

But, the truth is, the guy is pretty amazing.

When I went through a divorce many moons ago, I called him to tell him that I was horribly nervous to go see a divorce attorney by myself. He called me back ten minutes later with a ticket purchased and flew down the next day to come with me.

When I freaked out about my computer getting a virus and taking away all my hard work and writing, he spent hours on the phone with me walking me through fixing it and telling me to breathe every time I felt the strong desire to hyperventilate (which was every 2-3 minutes).

When he comes to visit and sees that I’m once again out of printer cartridges, he sneaks to the store and buys a few extra to hold me over until the next time he comes.

When I call him and say, “How are you doing?” he always answers, “Chip, Chip, Chipper!”

When I was a little girl, every Sunday he would buy the paper at the local deli and always bring me home a Kit Kat and slip it across the table so my mother wouldn’t see.

When I found my amazing husband and remarried, he cried at my wedding when we danced and told me how much he loved me and my new husband.

And when I see him with his grandchildren, he brings such a smile to my face. Everything he does with them, he did with us. From horsey rides to bad magic tricks. I’m now seeing it again through their eyes. And it’s awesome.

So happy Father’s Day, Dad. As Tina Turner said, while shaking her hips and showing a ridiculous amount of toned leg, “You’re simply the best.”

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Heartbroken. I freakin’ hate cancer.


I spend a lot of my time sharing the funny side of my life with you. I tell stories about poop in my hand, or my son motor-boating a waitress. And I treasure those stories because they are the truth of my life.

But today I don’t feel like being funny.

Today I found out that a friend from college lost his battle to cancer. A battle he fought long, hard and with an amazing team of cheerleaders around him. His wife is a dear friend from college and together they sat at my wedding seven years ago and shared their happiness with me.

And now my heart is broken for them. For their two children. For the rebuilding that happens now.

This past year, I have been amazed at the happiness their family was determined to have. To make memories together and laugh as much as possible. I loved seeing all their pictures smiling on Facebook and saw their joy in being together. They were and will be an amazing inspiration to me.

Today my daughter asked if I would take a nap with her. She asks me almost every time she is supposed to take a nap and I always tell her no. Today I said yes. I pretended to sleep while I listened to her half-snore and cuddle closer into my chest. It felt as if her head against my heart could heal it.

So do me a favor, OK? Instead of spending $5 on coffee this week, maybe donate it to a cancer research organization. Because I freakin’ hate cancer. And maybe someday, our children can talk about how they witnessed the cure for it and we can know that our money was part of that.

American Cancer Society

Thanks.

 

9 Comments

There’s a frog loose in our house right now…

frog-not-in-bucket

My view this morning. No frog. And yes, those turtles are fake.

Yep, you read that title correctly. We currently have a frog loose somewhere in our house.

A week ago, my daughter’s preschool teacher asked us to take a polliwog and watch it grow. We would then release it to the wild after it finished eating its tail. (Did you know they did that? Insane.)

Well, we moved it into a big bucket and put a bit of water and rocks on the bottom of the bucket.

We named him Olaf and spent painful minutes every day talking to it and pretending that the little almost-frog could hear us. If he actually could hear us, I’m betting he was thinking, “Get your heads out of my bucket and get me some damn flies.”

So last night, we all said goodnight to Olaf and went to bed naively believing he would be eagerly waiting for us in the morning.

But, when we went to go tell Olaf all our dreams from the night, he was gone.

Poof!

Gone!

Seems that he decided to jump ship – I mean jump bucket – and explore the big old house world.

The problem is – there’s no pond or flies in our house and he’s the size of a quarter.

So you can see my predicament.

We now have a newly-formed frog roaming our house and can’t find him. We’ve looked behind furniture, under the refrigerator, in the basement, and even on window sills. Why window sills? Because my daughter told me that’s where the frog from Princess & The Frog liked to hang out.

But no luck. No Olaf.

I’m hoping wherever that little crapper is, he’s living the dream. I just have to remember to check the toilet bowl before going to the bathroom now – that would be a hell of a way for the frog to meet his death.

 

8 Comments

Do the jokes kids tell ever make sense???

kids jokes make sense

Maybe these jokes only make a horse laugh…

So my two-year-old son is currently obsessed with knock-knock jokes. But of course, since he’s two, so they don’t make a lick of sense. Not one single bit. For example, this was his latest.

Knock Knock?
Who’s There?
Orange.
Orange who?
Orange is better than boogers.

Yeah, see? I told you. Not one single bit of sense to be found there. So I put the call out on Facebook to see how many other parents shared my pain. Holy mackeroli! The post went on fire! There were so many nonsensical jokes shared that I had to pick out a few and post them here. I’m seriously thrilled that I’m not alone in this insanity…

I’ve broken them into two categories.

KNOCK KNOCK JOKES THAT MAKE NO FRICK FRACKIN’ SENSE

1. Knock knock
Who’s there?
Butt!
Butt who?
Butt poop!

2. Knock knock
Who’s there?
Banana!
Banana who?
I just farted.

3. Knock knock
Who’s there?
Hudson!
Uhm… that’s your name, that isn’t really a joke.
Yeah it is, I made it up so I can make the joke whatever I want.

4. Knock knock
Who’s there?
Doorbell
Door bell who?
Well why don’t you go answer it and find out!

JOKES THAT HAVE PUNCHLINES THAT ONLY CHILDREN CAN UNDERSTAND

1. Why did the monkey fall out of the tree? Because it was dead.
2. Why did the little girl throw the couch out the window? Because she wanted to see it fly.
3. Why did the chicken cross the road? Because he wanted to.

And this folks is why my blog is called MARTINIS and Minivans. The martinis are truly the key to parenting, and to listening to horrible, horrible jokes…

12 Comments

Why my breasts hate summer…


tank-top-martinis-and-minivansAt night when I close my eyes and rest from the day, I’m reminded of how old I am by the way my breasts fall over the edges of my body. Gone are the two glorious mountains that once stood tall. They’ve been replaced by a massive ravine with two drooping boulders falling off cliffs.

And when I wake up in the morning and wipe the boob sweat from below them that formed during my never-fully-rested slumber, I am reminded of why my breasts hate summer.

It is because of two words. Two little words that have haunted me for most of my adult life.

Spaghetti straps.

Oh how I loathe that my size D boobs can’t enjoy the world of spaghetti straps. Well, they could, but then I’d have folks asking me why I’ve traded in my career as a writer to become a porn star.

I look longingly at those maxi dresses with adorable skinny straps with such severe jealousy. And then I look down and see the thickness that covers my shoulder. The dreaded tank top. The one that tells the world that you’ve lost the fight against your breasts and you need the support.

I hate telling the world that I need support. I don’t understand if the rest of me can be an independent feminist, why can’t my boobs?

 

15 Comments

The picture I promised you…


About a month ago, I was having a few glasses of wine with some girlfriends and said yes to one of their insane suggestions. I had showed them this picture I found on Pinterest and we joked about our days of wearing a banana clip and crimping our hair. After pouring another glass, one of them said, “Hey, you should recreate that picture when you hit 5,000 followers on Facebook!” And since I’m a lush and obviously in need of a higher alcohol tolerance level, I said yes.

As a reminder, this was the picture we saw.

banana clips

Readers, fellow bloggers and writers, and even old friends from high school, helped me to quickly get to 5,000. I was thrilled and terrified all at the same time.

And last night, the night of the banana clip photo shoot arrived.

One friend offered to do my makeup and another took the photo. Throughout it all, I wondered, “What the hell did I get myself into? Why couldn’t I just have been happy with 4,000 Facebook followers???”

And so, since you have been with me through this journey, I thought I would first share some pics of the process so you can feel like you were laughing right alongside of us. Or at me. I think everyone was actually laughing at me.

starting to crimp

My face after the first crimp. It became very obvious to me in that instant that I had gotten myself into something that would end with me looking very unattractive.

fighting the banana clip

The pain. The pain of the hair ripping into the banana clip. Also the pain of losing your dignity and ability to feel remotely young.

eyemakeup

The most makeup I think I have ever worn in my life. Also, the moment I realized I open my mouth when eye makeup is being applied. Weird.

laughing

Getting ready to pose and not being able to keep a straight face. I have no idea how models do it. And by “it”, I mean not eat anything and walk in heels.

And after all that. Are you ready?

Here it is!!

banana clips  Final picture

I did my best, folks. The crimping kept coming out of my hair. And no one can seriously glow to the level the model was glowing. Plus, I’m about to be 40 and she’s probably not old enough to see an “R-rated” movie. And yep, I added earrings. The awesome reader, Mercy Fritz, who mailed me her old Vidal Sassoon crimper, sent them along with it so I couldn’t resist!

So I did it. I recreated that damn photo. And I laughed with friends the entire time and appreciated all the people who helped get me there.

And in the end, after the photo session was over, here’s what I did.

after it is all done

I broke that damn banana clip in half and said thank god the 80′s are dead.

And here’s a few out-takes for you…

out-takes 3 out-takes out-takes2

 

Seriously though, thank you all for the support. You guys rock so much more than any hair device ever could.

39 Comments

Interview with my kids


interview-with-kidsThe other day I overheard my daughter telling her friend that her mommy knows Taylor Swift. I interrupted her and said, “No, sweetie, I don’t know Taylor Swift” and she looked confused and said, “I asked you if you knew who sang the song and you said yes.”

So I thought I would conduct an experiment and interview my children to see how much they really know about me. I can now officially state that I’m a stranger to them.

Where is Mommy from?

5 Yr Old Daughter: The place with the really big apple

2 Yr Old Son: Upstairs

Actual Answer: New York

 

What is Mommy’s job?

5 Yr Old Daughter: To type really fast on the computer

2 Yr Old Son: Make us granola bars (I’ve never made a granola bar in my life)

Actual Answer: Freelance writer

 

What is Mommy’s favorite food?

5 Yr Old Daughter: Mac and Cheese

2 Yr Old Son: Mac and Cheese

Actual Answer: Anything with wine, except Mac and Cheese.

 

What drives Mommy crazy?

5 Yr Old Daughter: When we don’t listen

2 Yr Old Son: Daddy

Actual Answer: When they and Daddy don’t listen.

 

What does Mommy want to be when she grows up?

5 Yr Old Daughter: I think you’re old already.

2 Yr Old Son: Uhm…a digger?

Actual Answer: No longer sleep deprived.

 

What does Mommy do after you go to bed?

5 Yr Old Daughter: Drink wine

2 Yr Old Son: Drink wine

Actual Answer: Drink Wine

 

10 Comments

What I’ve Learned from Blogging in Two Years…


martinis-and-minivans-two-yearsMy blog just celebrated it’s second year of life. Like any toddler, it’s had its tantrums and its triumphs.

I remember when it started walking on its own. When I didn’t have to spend every minute worrying over details like SEO, keywords and Google ranking. I could just set the parameters and let it walk.

Now two years later, I’ve learned a lot about being a mother to a blog.

I’ve learned that you have to pick your battles. You have to figure out what’s important to you and only write about that. You can’t please everyone and not all readers will like everything you say.

I’ve learned that it’s okay to say no to your blog. Just because it stands there, looking at you longingly, does not mean you have to give it attention every minute of the day.

I’ve learned that just like toddlers, blogs want you to get them the latest and greatest toy. It’s easy as a parent of a blog to get lured in by the flashy stuff. But in the end, you really just need your words. Fancy pictures, beautiful designs, and a long list of advertisers is nice – but your words are the connection to a reader. And those will take you down the long road.

And lastly, I’ve learned that with any kind of parenting – whether it be to actual children or blogs without faces – having a glass of wine/gin & tonic/martini/beer/straight vodka out of the bottle or any other beverage of your choice,  makes everything better.

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Mother’s Day – A mixed bag for me…

three generations of mothers

Three generations of mothers…

Mother’s day is a strange one for me. The part where my children wake me up with cards, breakfast, and a plethora of crafts that I can’t identify without my husband mouthing their meanings behind their heads – that part is awesome. However, the part where I remember that Mother’s Day was the last day I saw my grandmother alive  - not so much.

I truly love thinking about my grandmother. Most days I smile instead of frown, and I feel joy instead of pain. She lived a very long, very filled life.

But I still want more.

I still want her to be here. I want her to see my children grow up. To hear when my daughter asks questions like, “Will I ever grow a penis?” or when my son kisses my toes and asks if he can put one in his mouth. You know, the great stuff about parenting.

And I know she can’t. At least not in the physical sense.

I try not to remember that last day. The pain of walking out of her room and knowing in my soul I was never going to see her alive again. I carry that with me every day.

But I try not to keep that load too heavy. I have two little ones who need me to be excited about what they just built out of Legos or happy to see their glitter glued creations stuck to the floor.

So on Mother’s Day, I’ll smile. I’ll smile because I got to love her. She got to love my children. And together, we were mothers. That’s what it’s all about, right?

And to my own mother – you deserve the greatest thanks of all. I love you. You are the strength that binds it all together.

So happy Mother’s Day to all of you. Whether you are a mother or celebrate having one, thank you for being part of my motherhood journey.

 

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