What do you do when your child refuses to eat or is a picky eater?

Eat your veggies!!!! Image borrowed from: http://www.foodonthetable.com/

One thing that I have always been proud of as a parent, is that my kids are not picky eaters. They have always eaten their veggies, didn’t consume much sugar, and just had a well rounded diet. They ate consistently, ate well, and was always open to new foods.

That has all changed in the past 3 weeks. I have a 6 year old and a 21 month old. And both kids have decided that all the food they eat just doesn’t taste good. My 21 month old, I get it, he is testing his limits on what mommy will give him. He is playing with his food. You gave him bread and butter once and now he has decided that he won’t eat unless you only give him bread and butter for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Whatever…. with him, I just need to figure out how to incorporate vegetables back into his mouth and I will be satisfied as a mom. Does marinara sauce count as a veggie? In my house it does.

But my daughter is a different story. She has decided that she is a little princess and your job is to wait on her hand and foot. And if she doesn’t want what you give her to eat, she will fuck with your head and return the meal back to the kitchen, asking for something else to eat. And it is all my fault. I take full responsibility for this behavior. Now I have to figure out how to reprogram her.

You see, summer is here. And summer camp now has begun. She is expending lots of energy. According to her, an applesauce cup is enough for breakfast. A bag of fish crackers is enough for lunch. And some oranges and a string cheese is enough for dinner.

“The sandwich doesn’t have honey on it. The sandwich doesn’t have the right bread. The sandwich doesn’t have enough honey on it. The cheese wasn’t cold. The apple was yucky. I don’t like bananas now….”

This is the same girl who will down a chicken tostada at the end of the day when we treat to take out.

So after about 3 weeks of this going on, I lost it this morning. After 3 weeks of me tending to her every need by allowing her to return the food and giving her a different option, (since I am paranoid that she will die of starvation), allowing her to eat one bite and return it, I went totally bonkers and freaked out (check out that run on sentence).

It all started with instant oatmeal…. 3 mornings a week, we rush out of the house each morning with a car full of bags, laptops, lunches, backpacks, etc. We struggle to get hair and teeth brushed, beds made, get dressed, and attempt to not leave the house as if a complete tornado had just flown in. And 3 mornings a week, I have no time to put up with kids not eating breakfast or at least taking breakfast with them in the car.

Ok so the oatmeal. Rushing around this morning, mistakenly allowing the TV to be on before she had started her morning routine, she asked for oatmeal. I think to myself, Great, she wants oatmeal. That will be a great meal to last with her until lunch time while she is at summer camp playing hard. I prepare the oatmeal. I put yummy butter and milk in it. I bring it to her on the couch with a towel and a smile. She ate one bite and said, “it is yucky, I want something else”.

“Are you (fucking) kidding me, girlfriend! There are people starving in poverty that have no food. I don’t have time to make you a different meal. Why don’t I just go into your piggy bank and take a dollar out and throw it in the trash. That is what you just did by refusing to eat the oatmeal. ” (of course I communicated my frustration with throwing the f-bomb at her)

And that, my fellow mommies, is the moment of clarity for me. The moment where I realized that I was the asshole in this situation. The moment the clouds parted in sky and the light shinned directly in my eye. Then I told her, she can go in the kitchen and find herself something to eat, cause I am done.

The rest of the day, as I sat at work pretending to do my job, all I could think about was how I was going to communicate to her with this massive discussion about how she needed to eat the food that is given to her, or she will go hungry. How she will be offered food and if she refuses it and it goes in the trash, it is her loss. That I will not be her short order cook anymore. That I am disappointed that she would waste food because we should be so lucky that we have food in the first place. How it takes work to prepare a meal and it should be appreciated. I was basically going to make a big huge stink about it.

But there was no huge talk. In the end, I decided to take it meal by meal. And basically gently remind her that if she didn’t eat the food provided to her, she would not eat, and that is really too bad. I am also thinking of having her start making her own meals, help with dinner, and basically start having her learn what it takes to prepare a meal. I am not going to get mad anymore. It really just goes in one ear and out the other. But I am going to give her the freedom to learn on her own what it means to be hungry if she chooses to not eat the food that is given to her.

I really think, for whatever reason, she decided she would going to try out this power struggle with me. I believe it really it has nothing to do with food itself, but more about testing the limits. It took me 3 weeks to catch on, but I am hoping that we see a turn of events.

Now getting my toddler to eat his veggies…..

*Disclaimer…. I am living off of 5 hours of sleep and a full work day, please taking 2 hours to get the toddler to go to sleep. Pardon the miss-spelling or grammar issues.

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Getting back to basics. Dusting off the sewing machine. Sewing some kids and doll clothes.

I felt like a kid waiting for Santa this week. Amazon was shipping me 3 brand new, full color, beautiful sewing books. When they arrived, I was in heaven. I have just received:

Sewing School – 21 Sewing Projects Kids Will Love to Make
I am so excited about this book. I have been wanting to teach my daughter how to sew for some time now. She is so into fashion and creating outfits. I really think if she knew how to sew, someday she can turn her creations from paper into actual clothing pieces. This book teachers kids how to hand sew and actually make stuff that is fun.

This book has over 21 sewing projects for kids. Super fun and easy for parents or teachers to coach kids through the projects.

Sewing Clothes Kids Love – This book is amazing! You get 10 full-size patterns of the cutest kid clothes ever. My daughter loves this style. Lots of mixed patterns, extra notions of ribbon, buttons, applique, etc.

 

Sew the Contemporary Wardrobe for 18-Inch Dolls – Which ended up being more “contemporary” for clothing from the 90’s. This was a little bit of a let down. But I think I can use the patterns and put a modern touch to it. Basically the American Girl doll will have a matching wardrobe as my daughter.

Ok, back to me! Flash back to when I was a kid. My mom made tons of clothes for me. I look back at the clothes she had made and I have to laugh. They looked like I was from “Little House On The Prairie”. Not sure if that was the style she as looking for, or she was just uber conservative and secretly wanted to be apart of of compound or something.

When I was in 8th grade, I took a sewing class in Jr High School. I remember I made a purple plaid sport blazer and rocked it in the school fashion show runway. I was so proud of myself. I loved that class.

Since then, I have been sewing on and off. I have to admit, I haven’t sewn a ton of garments. Most of my sewing has been pillows, quilts, curtains, eye pillows, baby ring slings, aprons, and baby bloomers. I haven’t sewn an actual garment from a pattern for 4 years. My daughter was almost 2 years old at the time. I had this fantasy where I would sew every Halloween costume my kids would wear. Hell, my mom did it for me, and I loved it! I had the most original costumes out of all the kids in my class.

After slaving over the pattern book, I finally choose the cutest bumble bee costume for my sweet little girl. I bought all the notion details, fabric, pattern, etc (which totaled $50), and got to work. I was so proud of my hard work. I thought, “She is going to love this. How could she not think this is the best thing in the world”.

She hated it. She refused to wear it. My 23 month old little girl was scaring my emotional well being. How could she?!!! So in the end, I made her wear it, tears and all. I am such a mean mommy. But… but… but… we were a bumble bee family and if she wasn’t a bee too, it would have just f-ed up the entire theme. And I haven’t sewn a garment since.

But I am officially ready to attempt the challenge again. I am praying this time will be different. This time, she gets to pick out her own pattern, her own fabric, and she gets to help me design it along the way. Will there be bitching along the way? Probably. Will we bicker at each other and one of us will ends up storming off and slamming a door? Most likely. But dammit, we will have quality mother daughter if it kills me!

One note in closing. There is a really high chance that I may become obsessed with this and lose myself in process. If that is the case, blogging may be set aside for a little bit. Don’t worry if this happens. Knowing me, I always get super excited about a hobby, then drop it like a fly when the next best thing comes along. Take blogging for example….

Swimming, Jr Life Guards, soccer, music, theater, oh my! When extra curricular activities rule (or ruin) your life.

When my daughter was as young as 6 months old, I had her in swim classes and a community play group. When she was 1, she was in a baby sign language play class and swimming. When she was 2, she was in tumbling and swimming. Then all the while during her preschool days, we religiously went to a weekly mommy and me music class. She also did dance class and gymnastics. Phew! Once we hit preschool, we were a part of a co-op where I worked in the class once a week.

We had time back then. I only worked 20 hours a week the first year of her life. And that is with only going into the office for 3 hours a week. I worked fulltime after she was a year old, but only 2-3 days a week in the office. With her being my only child, it was easy to fit in all these extra activities. And frankly I loved it. It was fun and a great way to get both of us out of the house.

But now I have 2 kids. Not only do I have 2 kids, but my daughter is in kindergarten everyday, where I work in the class once every other week. Now you would think I would have more time with her in Kindergarten every day and working less in the class than I did when she was in preschool. But somehow it doesn’t work that way. Kindergarten is only 3.5 hours long. In that time, I grocery shop, clean house, play with the baby, get the baby to bed, and hope for 2 hours of work time before having to pick her up from school.

We have only 1 extra curricular activity at the moment, and that is swim class twice a week. So from 4:00-5:00, we are walking to the pool, she is in swim class while the baby is in the gym childcare, and I am lucky if I can swim laps for 20 min. We have been doing this routine Tues/Thurs for 5 months now. And I am pooped!!!! This week, the swim school is on vacation from the holiday. Tuesday afternoon, we played in the backyard, I cleaned the kitchen, watered the yard, slowly made dinner, watched some TV, played in my daughter’s room with her, and maybe even watched a cloud pass by. My husband came home to a calm and mellow wife. Not some spastic crazy ball of fury, trying to rush to get everything done, the kids in bed, and on the couch with my laptop working by 8:00 pm. It was heaven!!! And it made me realize, that I need a break from having to be somewhere, at the same time, twice a week, every week.

Soccer is next, coming August!

However, our little break will be short lived. School is getting out for summer in a couple of weeks, and the extra curricular activity cycle starts all over again. Jr Life Guards gets started, then soccer in August. Holy Shit!!! At least in July, we should have a little break.

There is a part of me that feels as though our children benefit from having free time. Where they can play, make up games, dig in the dirt, have alone time to explore, etc. I totally agree! I kept my daughter so busy when she was a toddler and preschooler, where she can barely play by herself these days. She has a very short attention span for playing on her own, and I blame being all up in her ass for the first years of her life.

OMG! She needs music classes now, or she will miss her window of opportunity to learn an instrument. (sarcastic tone)

There is another part of me that wants to sign my daughter up for every single extra curricular activity she shows any interest in. This way it gives her exposure to all the killer genres of hobbies available. I already know, she isn’t into gymnastics. And even though she loves to dance, she really isn’t into dance class much. I think she would love theater, and would love to get her into a theater class some day. I also would love for her to learn how to play an instrument and maybe the baseball team. Holy Shit! You would think I wouldn’t be so anal about all this, but I can’t control myself. It is like a sick disease or something. She has so much life ahead of her. Why do I need to push her to try activities that she may not have any interest in. When she hits 4th grade, she can play in the school band if she wants. They also offer a drama group at school. There is no need for me to pay money for a class across town.

Then there is my little sweet baby boy. He is 20 months old and has not taken one class in his cute little life. No swim class, no music or baby babble classes. And you know what? He is the most content little boy ever. He can sit and play on his own for hours. Ok, maybe to say hours is a bit of an overkill. But he can play on his own for at least 30 minutes. In baby time, that is like forever.

I do plan on putting him in swim lessons or maybe a mommy and me music class in the fall. But my daughter will be in 1st grade until 3:15, so it will be so much easier to manage one child’s activities at a time.

I think in the end, I need to stick with my goal of 1 extra curricular activities at a time per kid. And have periods of a break between activities to stop and smell the roses, or in this case, stop and smell the dirty dishes in the sink. We need to find a balance where myself and the kids can be home with free play, as well as hauling their asses around town for games, classes, etc. If someone has the magic cure all solution for this, please share!

I need a swagger wagon, just to haul them around to all these activities.

An open letter to all the creeps and pedophiles out there

CREEPY PEOPLE, STAY AWAY FROM MY BLOG!
Image borrowed from: http://favim.com/image/167160/

Dear Creeps and Pedophiles,

You know who you are. You are the people out there who just arrived at my blog by searching for “how to get my girlfriend to shit on my face”. Or (the worst and most disturbing one I have ever seen), “kids fuck in the ass”. You disgust me. And although I know by typing those key phrases into this post, may draw you to my blog even more, I hope you read this and never come back again. 

Ok, I know I am naive and innocent of the ways of the sick and twisted world out there. When I created this blog, and choose the name “Poop On My Hands”, it was sarcastic symbolism of all the crap us parents go through in parenting on a day to day basis. It has nothing to do with any sort of kinky fantasy you may have about someone shitting on you. Nor does it have anything to do with a woman farting in your mouth.

And to all you pedophiles out there. Stay the fuck away from my blog. If you come to my blog, I hope you hit the back button, to your search results as quickly as I hope you dick falls off someday. How dare you wake up every morning and ever think you can click a link to my blog. You are sick in the head and need serious counselling. I pray you never violate a child and act out on your mentally disturbed fantasies. And I hope you never find what you are looking for on the web and are left with the worst blue balls you have ever experienced in your life.

I blog anonymously. Quite frankly, when I see what led some people to my blog, I am so thankful I blog anonymously. I never thought in a million years, I would see the key terms people have used to come to my blog. Some days, I squint my eyes just so I can only see the stats table, vs read any key phrases that were used to get to my blog. It saddens me, makes me want to vomit in my mouth, and hurts my soul to know there are sickos out there. Some days I want to close my blog and never type another word.

But as of today, I am going to keep trucking on and blog my heart out. However, I will continue to be careful of what I say, never discussing any facts of my kids that could be used in a perverted manner. However, the next thing you know, some pervert will find my blog by searching for “girl pooping in backyard flowers”. Or some misconstrued meaning from “daughter has tantrum”.

Not Yours Truly,
Delia Fairchild

A 6 year old’s quest for an American Girl Doll, part 2

If you haven’t had a chance to read:
A 6 year old’s quest for an American Girl Doll, part 1, check it out!

After my daughter decided that chores were basically slave labor, she decided to become an entrepreneur to raise money. She created paintings and put on an art show. None of the neighborhood kids wanted to come see her art show, let alone pay actual money for the art. So that was a bust (of course I thought it was so cute, that I purchased some art). She also attempted to become a street performer and pan handle for money. Basically she came out of her room with a pretend hymn book, singing, and holding an empty egg cartoon. We enjoyed the performance, until she stopped, gave us a horrible look and said, “Don’t you know why this egg carton is here? So you can put money in it”. Well, holy duh! Of course. How could we ever miss that?

She even tried "living room" street performing for money.  Image borrowed from: http://literarysignpost.com/2012/09/01/street-performer/

She even tried “living room” street performing for money.
Image borrowed from: http://literarysignpost.com/2012/09/01/street-performer/

After trial and error, she came home from daycare one day with an epiphany. She would put on a lemonade stand. Yes! This was the answer to all she was looking for. After thinking about this for some time, I decided, yes, I can handle this. Some Kool-ade, maybe some cookies, sell them for a buck each, BAM! No….. it doesn’t work that way apparently. You have to make the lemonade from scratch. Organic preferred. And in doing some “market research”, 25 cents is pretty much the going rate for a cup lemonade. Doing the math, I realized, she would earn maybe $5.00 if she was lucky. But I was willing to give it a try.

We picked a weekend, and set a time for the lemonade stand. I game her a 2 hour window to be open for business. We picked lemons from our daycare provider’s tree, purchased poster board, cups, and some cookies, and got to work on our marketing strategy. Ok, I have to admit, I have a career in marketing. I don’t want to toot my own horn, but I kinda know what I am doing when it comes to getting the word out. You just gotta blanket your target audience. Ok… I tooted!

Fresh Homemade Lemonade and Cookies. 25 cents!

It was SOOOOO hard not to want to micro manage. Of course by this time, this was MY lemonade stand in my mind, not hers. It took constant reminding, to stay in the background and gently coach the process, vs leading. I encouraged her to make a flyer and we could put it on the door steps of the homes on our street. Being that she is 6 years old, she isn’t the worlds best writer. But we worked together on what she wanted to say, I wrote it out, and she copied what I wrote and added her own flair. Apparently spider illustrations along with “Fresh Homemade Lemonade” was her marketing approach. Some words were miss spelled or missing. But you got the message from reading the flier. If anything the fact that it looks like it was written by a little kid, probably drew in more customers. It was SOOOO hard to not correct her every move. But I didn’t…. much.

By the time the lemonade stand open for business, she had left fliers with every house on our street, we put poster-board signs at the end of the street next to the bus stop, she made a hand written huge sign for her table, and I emailed our family and Kinder class, and posted it on Facebook. Overboard you may say? I think not!

Oh yeah, one last thing. She decided that we should feature face painting along with the lemonade. Which meant, mommy gets to face paint. Fun…. (that is “Fun” with a lingering sarcastic tone). But I went along with it. She also wanted to put out chairs for people to sit and enjoy their lemonade while they hung out. In the 2 hours her lemonade stand was open, she sold out of ALL the lemonade, had about 5 cookies left, and made $30!!!!! I could’t believe it. She added it to her money pile.

In doing some research, I found companies who sell clothes for the American Girl Doll for half the cost of the official brand. http://www.doll-clothes.com/ is one of them. Not having to pay so much for clothes, really helped the bottom dollar amount she would need to save.

She was convinced she had enough. I didn’t believe her, but was open to counting her money, again, so we could see how far she had to go. Low and behold, in one month’s time, she had saved a total of $100. I was shocked. You know what that means? I had to come up with my end of the bargain of matching her dollar for dollar? What the hell did I get myself into? I never thought she would be able to save that much. And in only a one month time? Really?

One thing I have to say, is that the ladies in our family have tenacious genes running through our blood. We are go-getter biatches! And we don’t work hard, we work smart. Funny how she already has figured that out. I am actually very proud of her. She put her mind to it and did it!

So today, she got to order the doll, the clothing, and the accessories she wanted. And so the waiting game starts. She better love this doll with all her heart. If I find her American Girl Doll in a pile with her other dolls, collecting dust with matted hair, in the closet, I am going to be pissed. Well, not pissed per say. I will probably just reclaim her as my own doll. I never had my own American Girl Doll. You are never too old. And technically I did pay for half of her….. I am secretly really excited for her to arrive. Does the stork bring her? She wrapped in silk when she arrives? Does heavenly light burst out of the box when you open it? I can’t wait!!!!

A 6 year old’s quest for an American Girl Doll, part 1

It all started about a month ago, on a warm sunny Spring day. The mail had arrived. And there it was. 30 pages of glossy full color heaven. The all mighty American Girl Doll catalog. It was like the clouds had parted and the heavens were singing to my daughter as her eye lite up turning each page of girly goodness.

This is the closest you will ever see what my daughter looks like.

This is the closest you will ever see what my daughter looks like.

She immediately decided that the American Girl Doll was the perfect doll for her. And a doll she MUST have in order to complete her existence on this earth. I of course, rolled my eyes and secretly wished that catalog never had arrived. I know my daughter. She plays with almost NEVER. She likes the idea of dolls. She has a collection of them. They pretty much chill in a pile in the closet collecting dust and knots in their hair. Poor dolls…. However according to my daughter, none of those dolls look like she does, hence why they are not played with and why she MUST have the American Girl Doll that looks like her. I looked at the price tag. $110.00!!!!! And you don’t even get a cute outfit or accessories with it. Are you fucking kidding me? Pardon my french, but what bullshit to expect a parent to fork out over a $100 for the doll. Not to mention $30-$50 per outfit. I won’t even spend that much money on an outfit for myself, let alone an outfit for an 18″ piece of plastic.

After she hounded me for a day or so, I decided to make her a deal (insert evil laugh now). She went through the entire and narrowed down everything she wanted, from the doll to 2 outfits to get her wardrobe collection started. We tallied the shipping, tax, and what little money she saved so far. She needed a total of $225.00. I agreed to match her dollar for dollar. Of course in mind my, I never thought in my wildest dreams she would actually follow through. Which in turn, would save me over $100. We are talking about a girl who would pan through the couch for loose change, just so she could use the little bit of saved money on yet another 6 inch stuffed beenie animal she saw at the drug store. But what the hell, right? This would be a good lesson of saving money, doing chores for money, and be patient if it was something she really wanted.

We started off with her making a poster with cut outs from the catalog of all the items she wanted. She then wrote, “Do you have any chores for me? I am saving for an American Girl Doll”. We posted it on Facebook for our friends and family to see. From that alone, she received $20.00 from a distant grandma. She also was able to earn some money from doing odd chores for the grandparents. This includes window washing for grandma, and helping her grandpa wash the boat.

She realized very quickly, that chores were a waste of time. Really? I had to think fast. My plan of teaching her the value of hard work was sinking quickly. She decided she didn’t want to help out around the house for extra money. She already has chores that she has to do as “a part of her contributions to the family”. But then there are things she can do for extra money. Apparently she is too above hard labor or something. I mean shit, all I asked her to do was pull some weeds for money. Weeds that would have taken me 5 min to pull myself. But to her, it was slave labor….

Read Part 2 of how she finally earned her money and made her big purchase. 

Mothers sickness retreat. A girl can dream, can’t she?

Bow down to the Porcelain God.

Bow down to the Porcelain God.

This weekend something horrible happened in our household. It started with a random public barfing session from my 18 month old son, in the middle of a museum hallway. What follows this, may not be for the queasy tummies. You have been warned.

The random barfing, continued during the day. Then started back up Saturday night. He barfed on at least 4 sets of pjs, 4 sets of sheets, and 4 sets of blankets. The next morning, I found barf on the crib, around the crib, and splattered on the wall. Then the diarrhea started…..

Fast forward to Sunday night. The baby had been doing better by now. Low appetite and diarrhea, but the vomiting had stopped. However, within 15 minutes of each other, my 6 year old daughter and I were co-barfing side by side. Thank goodness we have 2 bathrooms. If you had witnessed this, you would think we needed an exorcist. I was running to one bathroom, while she was just going at it all over the floor, hallway, walls, light switches  etc. My husband was freaking out. That evening my daughter and I made camp in our bedroom. A pot by her side, and me running to the bathroom through out the night. It was not a pretty sight to see. I will leave it at that.

The next day, she was pretty much back to normal. However I was a different story. It took all day for me to be able to hold down food and water without wanting to die. My husband luckily stayed home from work to watch the kids, while I tried to lock myself in my bedroom. The moment I would come out of hiding, my husband figured I felt well enough to help with the laundry, participate in the parenting, and be a fully functioning parent. Which of course made no sense to me, and just caused us to argue about what it mean to be a nurturing partner.

In the mist of me wanting to give up on anything right and holy in this world. I was crouched over, worshiping the porcelain god, where once my family’s butt was pressed up against. Now it just felt like a wonderful cooling surface for my sweating, sagging face. How do you like that visual? Anyway, I came up with an epiphany… or maybe it was a hallucination.

Someone should create a facility, retreat, service, what-have-you, for moms to go to when they are sick. Picture this if you will…. You get sick, your husband is taking care of the kids, but who is taking care of you? (of course you are thinking: Well shouldn’t your husband be taking care of you? You would think….) Wouldn’t it be nice to go somewhere away from the house, where you can be cozy with TV, people bringing you anything you need when you ring a bell, hold your hair when you puke, clean up after you, no noise, no kids, food to drink of your choice, and just be left alone to heal?

Then, at the same time while this is all going down…. The same service would then bring hot meals to your family, sanitize the house from all the germs, do your laundry, and basically play the roll of the mom while you are off healing in paradise. I would pay large sums of money for this service.

But then I realized something…. I do have this service. It is called my mommy and daddy. I needed my own mommy and daddy to take care of me. If I could, I would have camped out at my parents house, let them take care of me, and then in return, they could then go take care of my family. They could take care of everything. Ok, that is a far stretch and way too much to ask for. However, my dad would come over in a heart beat and take care of me, clean my kitchen, fold my laundry, put a cool cloth over my head, and tell me everything would be ok, if I asked him to. But I am too proud, too “strong” (not really), to ask for help. Apparently in my mind, I can take care of everything on my own.

I still think a “mom sick service” would be a wonderful invention. Someday, you’ll see, it will catch on. Million dollar idea.