Tag Archives: moms

The Weekend of Rachael

I have this story to tell, but I started writing it a week ago, and then I thought, “Wouldn’t this be so cool if I did it to the tune of the theme song from The Fresh Prince of Bel Air?” And then I never got around to writing it, and now it’s been a week, and I’m afraid if I don’t just tell you, it’ll be too late anyway.

So. Here’s what happened last weekend (as in 10 days ago).

No, I have to go back a little farther. I’m in this Facebook group for moms. It’s been going strong for almost 3 years, and I joined way back in April of 2012, when I went public about being pregnant with B. A coworker invited me to this group that her friend had started, which was, at the time, about 20 women around the country who were all pregnant. It was a fun group of people, and I liked it.

As fun, likable things do, it’s grown considerably. At present count, the group boasts over 100 members, and is relatively drama-free. (You might laugh, but consider what I just said: it’s over 100 women, mostly semi-hidden behind the anonymity of the internet, all engaged in parenting: the activity that turns you into a hormonal, defensive, stressed, confused, second-guesser.) But the group is supportive, it’s helpful, we send each other outgrown Halloween costumes and do Secret Santa gift exchanges and get together when it’s possible and tell each other what HFM/blocked tear ducts/normal diaper rash looks like.

One of the women from the original group (let’s call her Rachael) lived in Nebraska with her husband and her one child and her pregnant belly when I first e-met her. She was one of the women that I really took a shine to. We talked outside of the group, sent each Christmas cards, etc. This summer, she moved to Nevada with her (now three!) kids.

And last weekend, on a complete whim and a prayer, she hopped on a plane and flew to the Bay Area to meet a bunch of other moms in real life for the first time.

See, I had invited the Bay Area contingent of this group to come see the show my work is currently producing. We were going on Sunday afternoon. Jokingly, Rachael started talking about flying out to come with us. We egged her on and offered our couches, and the next thing I know, there I am at the airport picking her up.

Earlier that day, Drew had asked me if I was at all worried that she was catfishing us. I didn’t think that was likely, as it has been 2 1/2 years and that’s a very long con. But when I was waiting at the terminal, and she texted and said, “I just walked outside,” and all I could see was a tall guy standing on the curb – I did have a moment of “Uh-oh…” Luckily, then I saw Rachael a little further down and everything was fine.

It turns out she is just as lovely in person as she is online. She stayed over at my place on Friday night, then on Saturday we did brunch and hung out with some of the group in the East Bay, she stayed with another friend on Saturday night, and then a third friend on Sunday night. I hope it was as fun and casual as it all sounds – it was certainly gutsy to fly somewhere new to stay with a bunch of strangers, and I really hope that it paid off for her.

It did for us – it was awesome to get to meet a pseudo-celebrity, for one…I was a little star-struck. But for another, well, we Bay Area members have historically put a lot of planning into each meet up. Having this last-minute weekend happen where we pulled it together for multiple meals and hanging out – well, maybe it taught us to loosen up a little bit. Also, most of the hanging out didn’t involve children (ironic, since that’s what brought us all together), so maybe it also taught us that we can be friends based on our actual relationships, and not just based on the fact that we all have kids.

At any rate. It was an awesome, whirlwind, crazy weekend, and it all went by too fast. I had an amazing time. I hope we can do more stuff like that in the future. So thank you to Rachael for kicking it all off and taking a chance on us! And thanks for not being a catfisher or a murderer!

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Filed under Awesome, Being a girl, Celebrities, Friends, Nonfiction, Travel

30 before 30: The Did-Do List

Last May (so over a year ago), I started a blog post about the “30 before 30” that I wanted to accomplish. I only wrote down about seven things though, because it was looking a lot like every other list I make. It was basically a combination of my short term to-do list, my long term to-do list, my New Year’s Resolutions (which frequently repeat themselves), and wishful thinking.

With 30 literally around the corner (“literally” if you think of a weekend as a corner), it’s a little too late to accomplish the seven things I put on that list. I suppose I can try. But is that just setting myself up for five days of disappointment as I fail to get things started and finished and written and lost?

My Facebook moms group has a tradition: a did-do list, rather than a to-do list. Most people have a to-do list that they are constantly working on. I have one in my phone that I just keep running. (Side note: it inexplicably syncs to my gmail twice a day, so if I search my email I have pages and pages of that changing to-do list. Kind of annoying.) (I guess I could put “unsync to-do list from gmail” onto my 30 before 30 list.) (But that seems like it misses the point of a 30 before 30 list.)

Hence, the did-do list. What did you do today? Today, I did three loads of laundry! Today, I took my kid to the zoo! Or even: today, I took a shower! Or on the least productive of days: Today, no one got hurt!

It sounds cheesy, but it’s actually a really awesome and positive reinforcement – focusing on what you DID instead of what you DIDN’T do. How often do you get to do that?

So I propose that, every day for the next week, I will share with you something I DID do before I turn 30.

Today’s Did Do:

At work today, I created a spreadsheet detailing the expenses vs income for the fundraising luncheon two days ago, which I’ve spent the last three months working on. After double checking that I wasn’t forgetting any expenses, I discovered that we raised over $11,000 MORE than the estimated gross income.

They didn’t expect this event to be a money-maker. The estimated gross income was absurdly low. But an $11,000 surplus is an $11,000 surplus, and who am I to be picky about why it’s there? That’s tangible evidence that I am a great employee. I’ll take it.

Make spreadsheet of expenses/income

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Filed under Awesome, Being a girl, Nonfiction, Work

Happy Mother’s Day 2014!

mother's day 2014 typo

I rejected a lot of quotes before selecting this one. Because I think it sums up my experience over the last 19 months.

(Now if only there was a PS about appreciating your own mother, it would be perfect!)

Happy Mother’s Day!

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Filed under Baby, Children, Holidays, Love, Nonfiction, Sentiment, Typography

Dads: The New Suffragettes

Just to perseverate on my post about the imbalance between recognizing moms and dads for their contributions…

Commercials are a terrible perpetrators of this phenomenon. How many commercials feature a dad and a small child making some kind of mess, and then looking sheepish until the mom comes in, smiling, and cleans everything up? Or the commercial where the dad builds a slanted table and the mom has to save the day with Eggo cinnamon toast waffle sticks? In commercials, dads look like helpless slobs who can’t get their kid through the day to save their life, and the moms sweep in and fix everything in a second.

P&G is currently running a series of ads focused on the Olympics. You’ve probably seen them. There are three or four, and each one features a mother getting a young child out of bed, taking him or her to some early morning practice, cheering on the child, driving the child around, doing dishes, doing laundry, feeding the child, taking care of the house, etc. (There is no sign of a day job for any of these moms.) The child grows up and then we see them at the Olympics, doing their best and sticking that landing, winning that race, etc. And then the mom is in the stands crying, and the kid hugs the mom, or blows her a kiss through the TV, and it’s so happy and sweet, and the tagline at the end of the commercial is “The hardest job in the world is the best job in the world. Thank you, Mom.”

Here’s the long version (it incorporates all the different moms/kids), if you want to feel really good. I’m not going to lie, I just watched it and teared up a little.

I just saw that P&G has an entire Facebook page called “Thank you, Mom by P&G,” where they post things like this video and other little tidbits that make moms cry. I mean, let’s face it, some large percentage of Facebook is probably moms, and moms love stuff like this. Even just moms-to-be. Even people who just like kids. Or seeing people succeed.

Here, try this one if the first commercial didn’t push you over the edge.

Who am I kidding? Everyone loves stuff like this. Drew just eats this ish up, and he’s the kind of guy who will willingly watch videos of people falling down.

And I don’t have anything against these commercials, or this Facebook page, or their entire campaign. It’s smart. And it’s so sweet. They take that overwhelming Olympics feeling, like the world comes together in these feel-good games, and people work so hard for this…and they juxtapose that with the intimacy of watching someone grow up and achieve something on a personal level. So smart.

BUT. I just have to point out…where are the dads in all this?

That’s it. Just sayin’. Why can’t it be, “The hardest job in the world is the best job in the world. THANKS, MOM AND DAD.”

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Filed under "Other people", Being a girl, Children, Drew, Family, Games, Parents, Sentiment