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Saturday, January 30, 2010

Cent Saving Saturday

Coupons.

They are not my friends.

I mean I’ve tried SO many times to collect them, cut them out, put ‘em in those handy dandy coupon organizers (check out these cute ones on Etsy if you’re into that: This seller offers a clip onto your cart version that is pretty affordable http://www.etsy.com/shop/glowgirl16?section_id=5923255 or, you can check out this one that is less affordable, but super cute http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=39539434&ref=sr_gallery_16&&ga_search_query=coupon+organizer&ga_search_type=handmade&ga_page=&includes[]=tags&includes[]=title), add all the stuff I have coupons for to my shopping list, and then rush off to the store with nothing but Dumb Dad’s ATM card in hand (and sometimes not even that).

It’s one thing I can’t even pretend to be awesome at.

But, I have gotten some really great coupons lately that I’ve put to use.

Not food coupons, silly, awesome stuff coupons.

Like to NY&Company, and DSW, and JoAnn’s, and Borders, and even DIRECTV has sent me some, for two for one PPV movies (which I have thoroughly enjoyed thanks to the recent, unexpected disappearance of Blockbuster).

Point is, I’m not sure why I can remember to take my coupons for shoes and handbags and reading material when I’m going to the store, but can’t, for the life of me, remember to take my food coupons to the store.

Guess I just don’t see as much of a savings in the food department (everyone knows it’s not because I don’t care, obviously food is VERY important to me). Especially not when I have to buy 2 jugs of Lysol to get 50 cents off of a third. Seriously, who even needs that much Lysol? That would insinuate that I’m planning to spend a great deal of time using it, and that’s a commitment I just can’t make.

Anyway, guess I’m looking for people to share their couponing tips (because I know some of you are SERIOUS about your coupons). How do you make it work? And, just how much cash are we talking?

Free Samples

They, however, are my friends.

I love them and I always have.

When I was young, I mean youngER, I used to love getting those free samples from the magazines and the drugstore for perfume and lotions and junk like that.

I’m not even sure Mimi knows this, but I used to hoard those things in my room.

Nowadays, while I would not be caught wearing CVS perfume (and the magazines have gotten pretty stingy with their free samples, have you noticed that?), I have still found some pretty cool samples to try.

For example, I recently contacted Juice Beauty (really cool organic cosmetics company) and they sent me some samples of their Green Apple Antioxidant Moisturizer and their age defying Antioxidant Serum.

Very nice.

I can’t say that I look like a 17 year old again, but I can say that the moisturizer is to die for. It’s lightly scented, it’s not too thick (some I’ve tried are like rubbing paste on your face), and it leaves my skin feeling very smooth.

I’m a bit of a face moisturizing-aholic (sadly the rest of my body gets completely neglected during the winter months; I swear you could strike a match on my knees), so I really am hard to please in this department.

It is a little on the pricey side, but you have to remember that all that business about the best things in life are free is just not true it’s organic (like USDA certified, which has to mean something, right?), it’s amazing (because I said so), and this is your skin we’re talking about here, people!

Do you want to look like this when you’re 40?

old lady

No. Effing. Thanks.

Anyway. You can check out the serum here and the moisturizer here.

Other places to get cool freebies:

  • Pampers: They’ve teamed up their new product (set to launch in March, 2010) with Team USA for the Olympic Winter Games. Wanna deck your little cruiser out in their Olympic themed dipes? Sign up here and get a free sample. By signing up there you can also qualify to get other neat coupons and/or free stuff. I got Dumb Dad a Prilosec sample because I’m so over listening to him cry out like a scared school girl from the nightmares his heartburn gives him. You’d think he’d just wake up, but senor-sleeps-like-he’s-comatose can’t pull himself around enough for that. Of course he won’t agree to take the stuff, but he’ll eat anything if I dress it up in a chili dog.
  • Websites that know what they’re talking about like The Freebie Blogger or Freebies for Moms. They stay up to speed on all these sorts of things. Me, I’m useless in this department, unless you want to know what samples they are giving out at Costco this Friday, and then I’m your girl.

And, the cent saving tip you’ve all been desperately awaiting…

How to find someone to prepare your taxes, once you’ve attempted it yourself and realized that you’re either in huge trouble or a bigger idiot than you thought.

Back in my official tax prep days, clients of this nature comprised a good chunk of our mid season filers.

Usually they are everyday people with a little education and a lot of confidence. Computer savvy, money conscious, and totally surprised to see a balance due at the end of their tax statement.

They rush into the tax office looking haggard, anxious, and visibly annoyed. Begging (and by begging I mean ranting and raving about how some program screwed them over, you know, because the programs don’t simply respond to what YOU enter) moi to work my tax magic on their return and take away the $1000 balance due that they are convinced they don’t owe.

Sound like someone you know?

Well, you will be fine if you do exactly as I say.

A. Calm down.

2. Take a deep breath.

Then. Gather up your paper work and put it in a box (preferably in some sort of organized fashion) and then get yourself to the Internet ASAP.

Next. Visit this site first: www.irs.gov, because it gives you important tips for finding a tax preparer. And, I’m not talking about the one that sets up shop in your unlce’s basement at his bar. I’m talking about a legal one. Who will actually be able to be found if his work gets you sent to jail.

After that. Goggle it. “How to find a tax preparer”. Because Google can solve any problem. No kidding. Try “how to solve global warming” (apparently that’s so easy there is an ehow.com article about it!), or “how to be the perfect mother” (ehow again, they really can do just about everything).

When that’s done. Use all of the advice these sites give you (like looking them up in the National Association of Tax Professionals, and making sure they offer year round accessibility) and then call a few places to set up an appointment. They can’t make you pay them just to speak to them (well, I guess they can, but that right there is probably a red flag) and stopping by their office will give you a good sense of what they do. Meaning, if they have to meet you on the corner, blindfold you, and walk you to their alley-entry office with a sign on the door that says “Private”, you might want to go ahead and find another tax dude.

And, finally. If all else fails go to H&R Block. They may not be the absolutely most amazing tax prep service (I know some people have some serious beef with them), but they do have some tax professionals there that are awesome at what they do. Plus, the company (which is a large, publicly traded firm) will have to back what happens in their office. No way H&R Block will simply disappear. But, Aunt Tussie’s ex who does “everybody’s” taxes? He just might.

Whew, busy cent saving day today.

Now, be sure you come back Monday because some thing BIG is going down on PBD!

BIG!

It’s the launch date for my next dope, fresh, awesomely bodacious, rockin’, slammin’ PHOTO CONTEST!

That’s right.

First one of 2010 and it will be great!

Don’t question it. Just believe.

Year of awesome, remember?!

Friday, January 29, 2010

RanDumb: Rich and Famous

Once again it’s on (doo doo, doo doo, I know, my music references work WAY better in my head).

Anyway, welcome back for another RanDumb week in which Dumb Mom shares an entire week’s worth of moronic news with you just to take the focus off of her own mistakes while simultaneously boosting her self esteem causing her to talk in the third person like other people who have highly inflated egos (ie Karl Malone, please tell me you know who this is.).

And, since the dummies of Tinsel Town have been quite active this week I decided to focus on them a bit.

Really, poking fun of celebrities is like one of my most favoritest past times. Just ‘cause they spend so much time poking fun of me.

Okay, so maybe no celebrity has actually poked fun directly at me exactly. But, I would argue that, wearing all those expensive, fashionable clothes, and looking all gorgeous, and thin, with their perfect hair and their flawless skin and then rubbing it in by having their pictures taken and plastered all over the place is pretty much like the exact same thing.

I know you’re probably thinking I’m overreacting because they don’t do that on purpose and some of them claim that they don’t even enjoy it. Or, because even if they do enjoy it it’s not like it’s personal or intentionally done in order to damage my self-esteem or that of young girls.

But, whatever.

Don’t be trying to poke holes in my theory. My overwheling sense of guilt can’t take it. I can only talk crap about people who deserve it. My good conscious won’t allow me to sleep at night otherwise.

Don’t worry, it’s not like I’m about to start celebrity bashing; you know how I love me some celebrities.

I’m just gonna tell you why some of them are RanDumb.

Why don’t we start with Taylor “The Cuckoo” Swift?

No, silly not cuckoo like crazy, cuckoo like bird.

‘Cause she’s making her newly acquired home into a creepy-Michael-Jackson-inspired-Never land-of-horrors fantasy land.

It will be completely redone to include a moat (you know, for protection), a brass telescope (for looking at the night sky, but not the real night sky, the one PAINTED on her ceiling), and a human sized BIRDCAGE(because every young go-go dancer girl needs a cage of their own)?

Insert spooky music.

Ya see? This is what happens to people who don’t grow up with normal lives. They go bat-crap crazy.

Which is why I’m glad that Hubby and I spend a good chunk of time being broke as a joke. Wouldn’t want our kids to get all, what are they calling it to make it sound less bad than nuts? Oh yeah…quirky.

Yeahright.

I could totally live with quirky kids if I could also live with Justin Timberlake Mariah Carey’s closet, Kim Kardashian’s body, and Oprah’s bank account.

Anyway, Taylor going off the deep end is actually sorta sad because I really love her. I just can’t jump on board her her crazy train if she goes that route.

I’m scared of crazy.

But it is a little funny…

At least when it shows up on my favorite, most RanDumb show of all time: American Idol.

I know these hopefuls are not rich or famous, but they are all 100% convinced that they are gonna be. And that is like pretty much the same thing. Seriously, ask ‘em.

So, who made us LOL this week?

Biggest LOL Worthy Audition of Week 3

Two words: Dexter. Please-stop-winking-before-I-swallow-my-tongue Warren.

Okay, that was maybe a little more than two words, but I’m not sure Dexter would notice so you shouldn’t either.

He may not have strong command of the English language, but dang it, at least he’s got an (arguable if you ask me) amazing smile.

That’s it for Idol Idiots this week. Everyone else was either a decent singer or just so horribly bad that they weren’t even funny, just sad. Very, very sad.

Or actors?

I’m starting really believe that some of the “contestants” are just really great actors because I don’t believe that they can really be as socially awkward, fashion backwards, or hideously tone deaf as they portray.

I mean seriously.

Look at this guy…

Unreal.

Last but not least, let’s discuss the reality TV nightmare of the century: Nadia Suleman.

Yep, the one, the only, Octomom (who should technically be Quattuordecmom, because she actually has like 14 kids, right?).

But, her latest dumb act is attempting to convince me that this is for real:

octomom

Honestly?

How dumb do you think I am?

No one is dumb enough to believe that you can go from this…

octomom preg

AHHH! Sorry, scared me!

to this

octomom bikini

without any kind of enhancements, intervention, or pain (that’s what she told the magazine at least).

No. Effing. Way.

That stretch mark erasing cream doesn’t work that well (or even at all really).

And, where’d all the post-abdomen-stretched-to-the-ends-of-the-earth leftover belly skin get to?

I mean, not that I’m a great example or anything, but after carrying 3 kids, on 3 separate occasions, I’ve got a belly pouch up front like a kanga-friggin-roo.

It would be so helpful if it had a slit in the top, maybe a fleece lining? Then I could carry the toddler around in it during the winter.

Or, like what if it had a zipper, or a Velcro flap on top? Then I could put spare change in it, maybe the cell phone and car keys?

Would totally replace those nightmare fanny pack thingys that somehow got taken as an acceptable fashion item in the late 80’s. Those godforsaken freaks of fashion nature that should have burned like a 1690s witch in Salem, but somehow still manage to find their way into people’s drawers these days.

We could call it a Belly Bag, or a Tummy Tote, or, um… an Abdo-purse.

That has a very nice ring. Abdo-purse. Don’t let all that flabby belly skin go to waste, have it turned into and Abdo-purse!

Anyway, what’s your take on it?

Do you think she worked it off (being a single parent with no help and a butt load of kids is hard work; not that she would know), got it cut off, or had it airbrushed into oblivion?

Want to enjoy more random flavored fun?

Head on over to Mrs.4444’s and check out her Friday Fragment post. You can link up or just hang out and enjoy the fun.

<a href="http://mrs4444awards.blogspot.com/2009/03/friday-fragments.html" target="_blank"><img alt="Mommy's Idea" src="http://i520.photobucket.com/albums/w323/CarbaraB/Blog%20Graphics/scan00022-1.jpg"/></a>

But don’t go until after you tell me how you think Octomommy accomplished the surgery-free-non-invasive tummy tuck. I’m in wicked need of one of those.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Thank Me Later Thursday: Inaugural Edition

BOOM BABY!

It’s here.

The very first soon-to-be-famous edition of Thank Me Later Thursday, hosted by the probably-more-likely-to-be-infamous blog parenting BY dummies.

Since it’s our first time, I’ll take it slow and start with explaining exactly how this little naughty is supposed to work.

Kay.

I write a post about something that happened in which the other person/place/thing involved behaved in an annoying, embarrassing, or otherwise unfavorable way and then had the gall, the audacity, the galldacity to demonstrate inadequate amounts of gratitude towards me for not sweeping the leg, punching them in the throat, and/or putting them in a headlock.

Or.

I just give you some much needed advice that you can internalize or share with people in your life who really need it.

Easy, right?

Well, let’s jump right in then.

Since I am feeling in a particularly benevolent mood today, I’m gonna hook you up with some advice (which you can go ahead and feel free to use as the answer to one of Mama Kat’s Writer’s Workshop prompts for the week. You know, the one about advice from someone who knows stuff? I’ll be that someone for you.).

Now, I know that I’m not exactly an "expert", per se on any of these issues, but I do feel that I have tons of years of training in all of these departments.

I mean, I’ve been a mom for over 8 years now. I’ve been preggers three times. I’ve been married for 7 years (oops, guess that skeleton just fell outta the closet!). I’m a trained educator (among other largely useless things).

Plus, I consider myself an expert on nothing who knows pretty much everything. Maybe not ‘cause I’m super smart, but because I’ve had more fail days than most people in similar situations and, while I may not be savvy enough to avoid the recurrence of such days, I am smart enough to at least take notes.

So, please enjoy Dumb Mom’s Basic (ever growing) Guide to Life*.

And, um, you can THANK ME LATER!

Dumb Mom’s Guide to Dating

  1. Don’t hook up with guys who live in your apartment building. Unless you are rich (in which case hook up with whoever you want). Otherwise they are likely to have similar earning capabilities as you and will therefore not be able to support you should you require that after you get fired for stealing paper from the printer at work.
  2. Don’t spend countless years looking for a perfect 10. Find yourself a 7 when you are young and make him a 10. Man remodeling is one of my favorite past times. It’s hard work, but it’s so rewarding. Be aware though, that no matter where he started, they all turn out to be 4s once the baby shows up.

Dumb Mom’s Guide to Marriage

  1. Develop a celebrity crush. This is to ensure that there is someone to focus on (other than the guy who empties your trash at work) when hubby acts like a caveman. You’d be surprised to learn how awesome the trash dude can look when Hubby’s antics have you in a tizzy.
  2. Spend time doing things you love. Not together, silly. SEPARATELY. This will allow you to enjoy your awesome pre-married life without having to get all wrapped up in his totally-unawesome-gaming-addicted-sports-aholic-pre-married life that you married him in spite of, not because of.
  3. Communicate better. Meaning, give him a list (handwritten and taped to the refrigerator so he can’t lose it) of actual words to use (like frustrated, lonely, proud, etc) that a responsible human with a brain (aka you) will respond to. This should eliminate the grunts, head nods, and it-was-goods that he automatically resorts to during conversation. Details people. It’s all about DETAILS.
  4. Use tears. They work.

Dumb Mom’s Guide to Pregnancy

  1. Eat whatever you want. It is the only time in your life that it will be okay for you to be fat.
  2. Get new friends. Like pregnant ones. Because you will be a huge drag to all of your never-been-there buddies who really just want you to shut up about your back, and your feet, and your vag. I mean don’t get me wrong, you can still kick it with them from time to time, just try to find a pregnant friend or one that has a baby too so you don’t make yourself the fat-annoying-whiny-seriously-with-the-effing-baby-crap buzz kill friend. I mean already you can’t drink anymore, you can’t dance on the bar anymore, and despite the halfhearted mumblings to the contrary, you really don’t look that cute in the fitted jeans anymore. And, none of these things are gonna change too much once baby is born. Well, actually, I lied. It will change, because it’ll be even worse.
  3. Buy your soon-to-be-born kid cute clothes. Because it is fun.

Dumb Mom’s Guide to Motherhood

  1. Don’t be nervous. You honestly are not expected to know what to do. Being anxious and exhausted all the time is like part of your divine punishment for having so much fun creating the little crumb snatchers. When you’ve worked off your had-too-much-fun-time-to-pay debt to the universe, things will mellow out a bit and your kid will start acting like a human, as opposed to an alien sent to Earth specifically to torture you.
  2. Don’t compare your kids. Not to other kids, and not to each other. All it does is make you and them think they suck. Nobody likes to think they suck.
  3. Don’t bother learning to cook. Pretty much everything they are gonna eat without puking can be made in a toaster oven or a microwave. Instead spend your time coming up with creative way to punish evil creatures that are small. This is an effective use of your time that will undoubtedly come in handy.
  4. Don’t waste money buying 100s of dollars in fancy picture books. Chances are good that they are only gonna let you read the one, most annoying title in the house over and over and over again. You know, the repetitive one, with the bad illustrations? Yeah, that one. Plan to memorize it ‘cause your kid will and if you can recite it without actually having to look at it you may be able to sneak a few peeks at Ellen while you “read”.
  5. Don’t encourage them to love music. They will just become little ipod Nazis and make you want to run your car into a ditch by screaming that you, “PAY DA BAYARGIGANS AGAIN MOMMY!” repeatedly. Or, if they are particularly evil, they’ll learn the words to inappropriate songs like Birthday Sex and I Kissed a Girl and sing them in public just to embarrass you. It’s sorta cute at home, but not so much at Mommy and Me class.
  6. Find a good hiding place. Have one built if necessary. It’s the only way you’ll ever have a moment alone with an ice cream sandwich again.
  7. Don’t require them to socialize with each other. Actually, the less time you allow them to spend with each other the better. It limits the time they have to concoct hair brained activities that are devised to inflict suffering up on you. And, it decreases the rate at which your littler, not-yet-ruined children learn to torment you.
  8. Don’t use the word no around them when they are babies. They will learn it and immediately use it against you.
  9. Don’t try to keep them from farting/burping/etc. At least not if they are boys. Being in full control of their bodily functions is extremely important as at some point in their lives they will be involved in fart wars, burping contests, or peeing matches. You want your kid to rock these as they are an important test of manhood. Not being able to perform well at these events is almost as damaging as “throwing like a girl” or “screaming like a bi*#@”. Besides, everybody needs to be good at something and being able to fart the National Anthem without deucing himself could be your boy’s one and only claim to fame. Don’t take that away from him.
  10. Don’t sweat it if they say they hate you. They probably really do (or at least think they do). But really, who even cares?

Whew!

Anything else you need to know about?

Seriously, I could go on for days.

But I won’t.

I’ll get to the part you really care about and let you go ahead and add your own links to Thank Me Later Thursday.

Please feel free to add my brand new, hand crafted, was-it-custom-designed-by-a-bloody-two-year-old? button to your post if you’re participating (or to your sidebar if you’re not, but you love me anyway).



(It's over there, on the left, down a little, under the other, above the rest.)

And, don't forget to head on over to visit Kmama at The Daily Dribbles and link up to her Thank You Very Much link as well.

The Daily Dribbles

*PBD's If You Die Disclaimer*- Should you or anyone around you suffer fatal or irreparable injuries, including, but not limited to accidental loss of limb and fiery death (two of my biggest concerns), while carrying out any of the aformentioned jewels of advice don't look over here. I am ans UNofficial knower of stuff and as such can not be held accountable when my UNofficial advice causes your husband to leave you, your friends to desert you, or social services to make unscheduled visits to your house. If questioned I will deny. Wholeheartedly.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Wordful Wednesday: The Others

After looking back over my blog for the past month I’ve decided that this is what I may as well start calling Dude #1 and Dude #2, The Others.

Because collectively they have shown up on my blog a total of, um, let me just count this up here…

ONCE!

For the nearly-over entire month of January they made ONE appearance.

I’m ashamed really okay I’m not, but it sounded like the right thing to say to even admit their total lack of existence in my little corner of the blogosphere.

Because it’s not like they haven’t been here in real life.

They have (ignore all rumblings you may have heard about a blogging mom attempting to sell her kids on the black market).

Every.

Single.

Night.

Making watching American Idol, or finishing up my articles, or posting on my blog, or thinking straight without someone YELLING IN MY FACE virtually impossible.

They are taking up such a huge part of my life at the moment (well the middle one is at least) that I’m probably blocking out their existence, like some sort of PTSD response to my day.

Or, maybe I’ve not featured them much because the small one is just so stinkin’ cute the camera finds him naturally.

Kidding!

It’s not natural, it’s totally intentional.

But, seriously, only because it was his birthday this month and because he is totally the cutest at the moment.

And maybe because Mister-I-can’t-tear-myself-away-from-a-book-for-one-bloody-second is so eager to be photographed.

_MG_0066

Yeahright (but he is handsome, isn’t he?).

At least I can always count on Mr..Photogenic for one thing (well one thing other than telling me he has “the worstest wife EVER!”, and by wife he actually means Life, but L is still hard for him to pronounce which makes statements like this more hilarious than they are sad, which just further pisses him off).

BOOM BABY!

_MG_0102sm

Yeah, I said it.

But only because he did.

But, while we’re on the subject of making an entrance, let me just go ahead and introduce you to a new element debuting on PBD.

It’s actually just a new twist on an old favorite, because, you know, I’m getting bored, and if I’m getting bored you must be darn near to tears at this point.

So, without further adieu, let me introduce you to Thank Me Later Thursdays!

It’s a meme (that’s the word, right, for when I make up an idea that is ridiculously dope and encourage all of you to love it and prove it by writing about it too?) in which you get to tell a lovely unappreciative someone what an awesome job you did on their behalf so that they can thank you for it.

Now this can be a for reals thank me, like to your mom for that time you stepped on the toilet paper that was stuck to her shoe instead of letting her drag it all over her retirement party.

But, it’s also for other times.

Like let’s say you pick up a classmate from college (who’s not really a friend) from the train station even though it’s rush hour, it’s pouring, your five month old is screaming his head off in the back seat, and you are starving because you didn’t have time to grab a bite before starting the trip from Hell. And, when you finally arrive to retrieve the-largely-unimportant-person-who-you-are-helping-outta-the-kindness-of-your-heart she slams your car door and says, “Gawd, could you take any longer?”

She would deserve a Thank Me Later Thursday Post.

Or, let’s say, hypothetically, that you call Wal-Mart (cringe) and ask if you can return something edible if you have the receipt and the gum popping imbecile clerk on the phone confirms that you can. So you get in your car along with your three kids and drive 20 minutes to the craphole store where you proceed to wait in line for 25 more minutes while the toothless broad in the shower cap and obviously-stolen-from-the-nail-shop flip flops argues with the clerk (who is the same gum popping one from the phone) about a rain check (what is that even?). When you finally get up there your baby has diarrhea up to his collar and your other two boys are whining about having to stand so long and the gum popping F-face from the phone says to you, “Nu-uh, we cain’t take back no kinds a food.” And, instead of leaping over the counter and shoving the gum straight down her throat to her small intestine you listen to her ignorant story about how “you coulda had poisoneded them or sumpin’”.

She can Thank You Later because she totally deserved that punch in the face and you both know it.

Or, you can allow us to thank you later and just be all helpful and give us some much needed advice, like how to paint a bathroom without effing it up, or how to bake lasagna without effing it up, or how to raise a kid without effing it up.

See where I’m going with this?

Easy right?

So post yours on you blog, link back to me, add my button when I finally come up with one, and come here on Thursday to link up.

And, I don;t even care if it’s just like a Thank Me Later shout out embedded (even deeply) in another post about something else entirely.

Make it work for you.

I’m easy, remember?!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Hitting the Road with a…

jake

Holy mobile home Batman!

Now instead of just acting like they fell out of a trailer they actually can!

Time’s a wastin’ so let’s jump right in and wrap our legs around this one!

What? Is it inappropriate to wrap your legs around someone (and make them carry you through a vineyard) on your first date?

Well, whatever, if Gia, queen of the most annoying laugh known to man, can do it, then I’m doing it to.

First Individual Date: The Vineyard

New York city girl, Gia was the lucky winner of this date, which was perfect because she’d “always wanted to go to a vineyard”.

Really?

She proclaimed early in the date that she used to be a huge, brutally bullied nerd.

So badly powned by her classmates that her parents took her outta school over it.

Guess that explains the enhancements.

Too bad there wasn’t something they could do about the whole baby talk thing…unless perhaps that’s part of her charm?

Anyway, she did some giggling, some hair tossing, and some kissing and bada bing, he gave her the rose.

Jake is so freakin’ easy I swear I could probably win him over.

Yeahright.

He doesn’t seem like he’d be into big, black, blogging, babes with belly bags, but maybe?!

Group Date: Pismo Beach

Dune buggies, Tenley being tossed down a cliff and eating a face full of sand sand surfing, Corrie and Jake chucking themselves awkwardly offa the dunes in a strange and awkward attempt to bond that really looked more painful than anything, followed by a nice fancy, get-the-sand-outta-your-ears-and-wear-a-tight-dress dinner.

Since there was so much cuckoo going on during it, let me just give you the highlights:

1. Ashleigh is NOT desperate. Never mind all the groping and rubbing and unreciprocated cuddling, she is NOT desperate, because she would never be “THAT girl”.

2. Ali is a biotch. I thought she was nice and sweet and cool at the beginning, but um, not so much. I’m surprised because I’m usually such a good judge of character. Like with Brittnie and her whole celibacy pact thingy, and Bill Clinton and his “I did not have sexual relations with that woman”, and Milli Vanilli. What? Don’t lie, you believed all that crap too. Especially the Brittnie thing. I mean JT is SO easy to resist and she doesn’t look like a whore at all.

3. Tenley is growing on me. Even though she is way TOO nice for my tastes, at least it seems real. She seems like a genuine person who is just inexperienced and naive. That’s forgivable. It’s stupid and naive that bugs the crap outta me.

4. Vienna is not even trying. I’m convinced that having the girls hate her was part of her make-him-feel-sorry-for-me strategy. Too bad it backfired tonight as Jake sat her down and gave her a talking to in which he blamed her for being hated. You know, because it’s her fault.

5. Jake likes Tenley more than Corrie. Obviously because he gave her the freakin’ rose, idiot. Get over, at least you didn’t get sent home.

Two-on-One Date: Big Sur

In the red (or was that coat magenta?) corner we have single mom, hairstylist, already had a one-on-one-with-her-kid-as-a-sidekick date with Jake, Ella.

And, in the black corner (why didn’t they take their coats off at the dinner table?) we have, wait what was her name? The chick he doesn’t pay attention to at all? Oh yeah, Karen? No, KATHryn.

And, who came out the victor?

NEITHER!

That’s right people, in an unexpected twist (that I’m sure ABC loved) our fly boy sent both of the chicks packing.

I’m not surprised (because he probably didn’t want to be an instant dad to Ella’s kid and or Kathryn’s whipping boy since she basically jumped down his throat about being ignored), but both of them were.

Did he have to actually burn the rose, though?

That was a little too I’m-gonna-get-you-sucka creepy for me.

The Rose Party/Ceremony

Another action packed event for the Bachelor and his harem the girls.

I learned so much:

1. Don’t use air quotes. It is dumb and it makes you look dumb when you use them.

2. Don’t waste your one-on-one time with Jake dissing other chicks. It is dumb and it makes you look dumb when you don’t get a rose and they do.

3. Don’t be yourself (instead you should pretend to be nice like Ali does). It is dumb and you look dumb when you do it.

4. Don’t wear an ill fitting off the shoulder black dress. Refer to number one above for a clear explanation as to why.

5. Don’t be Ashleigh or Jessie.

Yep, instead of sending just one girl home, in the most emotional rose ceremony to date (sounded just like Chris, right), Jake stopped the rose ceremony to consult with Mister-I’m-more-than-just-a-host-I-make-the-rules-in-this-biotch-Chris Harrison and wound up kicking two of the ladies to the curb.

They showed their intense, righteous indignation in classic dissed and pissed Bachelor fashion, reminding me that in spite of the corny clich├ęs and over exaggerated twists I really do love this freakin’ show.

Join us next week as Jake parties in San Fran with Gia (The Ex-Nerd Turned Swimsuit Model), Vienna (The Out of the Closet Biotch), Corrie (The Lucky She Didn’t Pull a Hammy or Break a Wrist on the Dunes Hopeful), Tenley (The Virtual Virgin), and Ali (The Closet Biotch).

Monday, January 25, 2010

Make New (i)friends Monday: Mormon Surrogate



French fries are tasty, chocolate is yummy,
I know this lady who lends out her tummy.
That's right, I said it, she rents out her womb,
to lift other people and keep them from doom.

That is not the nicest thing I've ever heard,
but there's more I can tell you, just take my word.
A mommy surrogate is how she's known,
But, she's more than that around her home.

She has three kids and a couple of cats,
she thinks she knows how to multitask.
She's forgiving, she's nice, she's sometimes shy,
the person she married was her high school guy.

She's lived all over, she pierced her tongue,
but she wasn't too crazy back when she was young.
She seems like someone who is honest and true,
Oh, I almost forgot, she's Mormon too!

Go check out one of my newest finds, Mormon Surrogate.

I was drawn to her blog, I think from SITS, and I decided to stay and invite her to be an ifriend because I've never known anyone who has actually done such a selfless act as being a surrogate to another family.

And, she did it TWICE!

Here is an excerpt from her "Random Facts About Me" post...

I'm Mormon and I'm a Surrogate, kind of explains the title of my blog. (not too many of us out there) I married my best friend- my high school sweetheart. (you either hink it's gaggy or super cool) I have 3 children of my own- A boy who will be 13 in March, a girl who is10 and my baby girl who is 6. My 1st surrogate baby was a girl born August 1, 2006. My 2nd surrogacy ended in an early miscarriage in 2007. My 3rd surrogacy was an awesome adventure with twin boys. They were born April 15, 2009. (still trying to get my tummy back to normal) * Not a huge fan ofc-sections. I was a Navy Wife for 10 years. I have lived in Mayport, Florida, San Diego and Utah. I prefer Utah. I'm chaotic. I am sarcastic- although I try not to be too hurtful... I absolutely love to sing, and music makes me very happy! My favorite thing lately is Beatles Rock Band. I'm sometimes shy. I love candy! I try to treat others the way I'd like to be treated. I recently began homeschooling my children and I absolutely love it. I usually see things more than one way and sometimes over-analyze things. I try to plan ahead. Sometimes I can't plan ahead and have to do certain things last minute and I get major anxiety! I have "to do" lists all over my house. I'm always "working" on them. I get excited over buying the simplest things- notebooks, liquid laundry detergent,dryer sheets, I guess things that are brand new and never been used? I've been a Beatle's fan since I was 4. I have too many clothes. I have too much of everything and I never know what to do with it all. I am very forgiving. I am not a phone person, I'd rather write you a note or e-mail. I'm not very domestic. I usually give much more than I receive. I am honest. It's so much better that why. Keeps you out of trouble. If you're honest at least 99.9% of the time, you don't do stupid things, because then you'd have to be honest about doing them. I learned this the hard way, but made a vow to be honest from that point on. Sometimes I am too honest and tell people too much. When I get really upset I say "Flipping Hell" or "Holy Hell" LOL or I cuss in my mind. While John was in the Navy, we moved 10 times in 7 years. I had my tongue pierced...

Go on over HERE and read the rest.

Or, check out one of these links to learn more about being Mormon and being a surrogate.



Wanna be an ifriend (which is just my sophisticated way of saying a guest blogger)? Well duh, of course you do! Shoot me an email at parentingbydummies[at]gmail[dot]com. I'll put you on the list as long as you're not into taxidermy, hard core porn (soft is probably okay), or outer space.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Cent Saving Saturday

I know, at least 8 of you are here to see if you are the big winner this Cent Saving Saturday morning, but alas, only one lucky winner can be selected.

Drum rollllllll…

And, the lucky winner of the H&R Block At Home tax preparation software, hand selected by one grimy, sticky, 4 year old hand is…

Marfmom, from Musings of a Marfan Mom!

Go on over and congratulate her, and then hurry on back to check out today’s tax saving tip and another great way I’ve found to save some Benjamins, okay, maybe not actual Benjamins, but at least a couple of Hamiltons for sure.

Back?

Okay.

Guess what I did yesterday!

I filed my taxes!

Woot! (Don’t you just hate love that word?  It’s not at all annoying or nonsensical and it doesn’t make you feel or look like a huge dork, particularly not when you do it in conjunction with that late 90s raise the roof move that just won’t go away!).

But, I didn’t file before I took a list at Kiplinger’s List of The Most Overlooked Tax Deductions.

Okay, I’m lying.

I actually didn’t look at the list until after I filed, but you should totally check it out (unless you are like me and you read tax code for fun) before you hit send.

I mean there are all kinds of things on there that are easy to forget (or are just likely completely unknown).

For example: Do you know much about the state tax vs.. sales tax deduction options? 

Probably not and, particularly if you live in a state like Florida or Texas (or if you bought something awesome and expensive last year) where thy don’t collect state tax, you really should because knowing how these two deductions work could help save you a whole butt load of cents.

Or.  What about all that student loan interest that your parents are still paying for you? 

Did you know that YOU can deduct that?

Although, if you are in this unique and utterly unbelievably lucky situation, please tell your parents about me because I’d like to be adopted so that I can be spoiled rotten eternally grateful too.

And here we all were thinking being spoiled was a bad thing!

Anyway. 

Point is, you should peep the list before you put your John Hancock on those tax returns because filing a 1040X (the form you use to file an amendment when you screw up) is a PAIN.

Anyway, enough with the boring stuff!

How about a fun way to save money?

On new spectacles.

Sadly, my prescription eyewear is an accessory that I’m unable to live without so finding ways to save a few bucks and still get quality, trendy glasses is sort of a big deal to me.

Which is why I dotted my shorts when the awesome lady from Glasses USA contacted me to do a review of their, previously-unknown-to-me service.

I mean, I know you can get everything offa the Internet, but I honestly never even considered getting my glasses from an online site.

I thought going into the store and waiting three hours, even though they say it’s only gonna take one, was the only way to go about it.

And, I thought that paying out the pooper for them was a necessity too.

Seriously, my last pair of glasses cost me THREE HUNDRED AMERICAN DOLLARS!

WTH?!  I have insurance?!

They gave me some baloney about how they only give a 10% discount to people with “my kind of insurance”.  And since #2 had caused my pair a fatal injury, I’d no choice but to cough up the dough to THE MAN for a new pair.

Cool thing about Glasses USA, though is that most of their sets are affordable.  Like less than $100 bucks affordable.

And, getting them is easy.

All you have to do is go to an eye doc, get him to check out your peepers and write you a prescription for what you need.  

Then, you pick out the pair you love on the site and send in your prescription with your order.

You’ll be looking all fly in your new specs in like a week.

And, I know you’re probably thinking that this wouldn’t work for you because you like to try them on and stuff and see if your face looks fatter or more grandma-ish in them because I was thinking that too.

But, even if you do get a pair and you look like Estelle Getty in them or they make the bridge of your nose scream in pain, you can send them back, no questions asked.

Seriously, it worked for me.

I actually just got 2 new pairs of glasses; one pair via Glasses USA and one pair via the traditional route (I mean I was there, and I had a rare afternoon alone, and I saw a pair I fell in love with; had to act.).

But, you probably can’t even tell the difference, can you?

       glasses2                      glasses1

I look equally fat in both pairs.

And to think I was going for the smart Alicia Keys look.

alicia glasses

But I wound up with the fat Janet look instead.

fat janet 2

Dang these effing double chins of mine.  GRRRR!

I need Lasix and lipo.

And you need to send me an email if you’d like to have the code to save even more on a pair of glasses from glassesusa.com

 

 

*PBD admits it’s free disclaimer:  90% of the stuff I review is given to me free of charge from companies that are dying to know what I think.  I’m not sure if it’s because I’m really that awesome or really that easy.  Either way I’m happy and I’m willing to share my thoughts on the products.  Rest assured though that, regardless of the fact that I didn’t have to spend my own cash to obtain the item, I am ALWAYS 100% honest about my opinion.  But, don’t get excited, it’s not because I’m oozing integrity or anything, I’m really just not smart enough, devious enough, or interested enough to lie.

Friday, January 22, 2010

RanDumb, Really?

Tons of things confuse me.

Obviously there are the standard ones like, algorithms, how to convert metric units into something normal like inches or cups, and outer space.

But there’s a butt load of other crap that boggles my mind as well. 

For example, when Hubby calls me from the medicine aisle at Target and asks me if he should get the grape medicine or the cherry medicine for the dudes, and I tell him cherry because they HATE grape (and by HATE I mean it makes them gag), but then for some reason that I can not for the life of me determine he comes home with a bag filled with the grape ones anyway?!

I always just wonder why he bothered to call me and ask if he wasn't gonna listen.

I can’t imagine he’s doing it just to tick me off.  Even Dumb Dad’s not that dumb.

Or, when Hubby (obviously there are tons of things he does that I find to be mindblowingly confusing) asks me what movie I want to see.  I say, “Why don’t you get Julie and Julia or The Proposal?” and he comes back with District 9.

Really?! 

WTH?!  What kind of mind game are you playing at, Sir?! 

WHY?!

I’m sure in his mind asking me is like his way of appearing interested in what I say and eager to please me.  In my mind (aka reality) it is just annoying.

Anyway.  This week on RanDumb I’m going to explore a number of topics that I find confusing (aka Dumb).

Through extensive research (which is an advanced way of saying I Googled it), I have discovered that some of them actually do have answers.

Sadly the more tricky ones remain unexplained. 

Feel free to offer your own explanations, but don’t be surprised if I contradict you.  I may not know what the answers are, but I’m pretty sure I know what they aren’t.

5 RanDumb Things that Made Dumb Mom Say Really?

1.  That guys don’t like surprises. 

Really? 

Why the Hell not?  What’s wrong with surprises? 

They are exciting, and fun, and…surprising.  I love surprises.  I rarely ever get them since I am in charge of developing, organizing, and carrying out every single idea that this household comes up with, but I’d love to be surprised (with something I’ve preapproved, of course) from time to time.  I mean, really, there’s no such thing as a bad surprise because bad surprises are called mistakes. 

Hubby, on the other hand HATES surprises.  I gave him a surprise birthday party like 8 years ago and I’ve never seen anyone have a less happy face at a party.  He was miserable.  He acted nice enough about it, but later he informed that he really, truly, honestly, no lie just doesn’t like being surprised.

Really?

Naturally, I assumed he was lying.  Or that, if he was telling the truth, he was some sort of heartless freak o’ nature because EVERYONE likes surprises.

Well, apparently, he’s neither because according to this guy, who I am totally in love with because he is singlehandedly saving my marriage with his witty insight John DeVore, who writes on The Frisky agrees that “Dudes Do Not Dig Surprises”.  He even gives some believably (although irrational) reasons as to why.

Go.  Figure.

2.  Americans are sensitive. 

About race.  About nudity.  About everything. 

This has baffled me for years.  I used to live in Europe.  For like 4 years.  The first week I was there my brother and I were watching a cartoon on television and right before our new-to-the-county-eyes the character dropped his shorts and took a dump in a stream, bearing is animated, naked booty to the world. 

We were taken aback. 

But that experience was nothing compared to the first time I visited a schwimmbad (German word for swimming pool) and discovered that tops were optional.  And the only ones gaping at the naked knockers were us Americans (and by us I mean every American but me because I was so embarrassed I nearly drowned myself in the wave pool).  No one there woulda thought to fine, or boycott, or make a stink about Janet’s wardrobe malfunction that has caused us to suffer through many years of sucky post-Janet Superbowl halftime “talent”. 

I mean, really?

Are Janet’s pierced nipples that offensive?

I’d love to be able to wake up to those everyday (because they were attached to my own chest, not because I was in bed with Miss-Jackson-if-you’re-nasty, although now that I think about it…).

And it’s not just nudity that gets all of our panties in a twist.

I mean look at all the trouble this Folgers commercial has caused.

Apparently, it’s sexist?

Really? 

Is anyone else who doesn’t have countless hours to dissect every single little element of every single little everything offended by it?

I’m probably dumb and insensitive but I just don’t get it.

It could be worse.  I mean look at this…

It totally perpetuates the stereotype that Chinese people can fly.

Even I know that’s not true.

Or what about this one…

You expect me to believe that one little box of chicken would be enough to shut all those people up? 

Yeahright.

3.  Animals have tons to do with boobs. 

Really?

Well, that’s what PETA is trying to convince me of anyway (DON’T GO TO THE LINK UNLESS YOU ARE 100% OKAY WITH SEEING A PAIR OF VERY COSTLY BIJONGAS).

I don’t know.

Personally, I could’ve done without the stripper.  I mean the sad images and the creepy-mad-rock-inspired accompaniment were convincing enough on their own.  The naked chick was just distracting because I couldn’t quit looking at her tigolbitties long enough to listen to her message.

4.  Some people are just effing crazy. 

A fact repeatedly proven by reality TV.

I mean did you see this dude on American Idol this week?

Come on.

Really?

Is there any way that dude is not tone deaf?

Doubt it.

And, what about this guy…

He’s lucky the only thing he “done ripped” were his pants.

5.  My children are spoiled.

Really? 

Because they don’t really act like it.

But, maybe the sweet gem of a woman who left the comment on my “Birthday Doughnut” post from a coupla days ago knows them better than I do.

Or.  Maybe I really am just to dumb to notice.

Either way, I’m thinking I should look into this claim and see if there is any validity to it, maybe I’ll take a poll or something, because the last thing I need is a spoiled kid hanging around here.

Loud, energetic, outgoing, overzealous, and showing daredevil like tendencies are hard enough to deal with!

Got a RanDumb video or news story to share with Dumb Mom?  Point the way because I can’t get enough of this stuff.

Have a random (or a RanDumb) post to share?  Head over to Mrs.. 4444 and her Friday Fragments to link up.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Bored?

Mama Kat wants us to share some surefire tips for staving off boredom.

Not sure what she’s gonna use ‘em for ‘cause I mean, between blogging, and doing her real job (yep she actually has one), and being a mom, and meeting up with the likes of me and BFF in Vegas for weekends of pleasure, I’m pretty sure that she doesn’t have time to get bored.

As for myself, I haven’t been bored in years so initially I was gonna choose on of the other prompts (like the one about all of the different places I’ve lived because when I count it up, I’ve lived in like 20 different houses, more than half of which were before I even graduated from high school. I’m thinking Mimi and Papa were running from the law!).

I mean, what does a person with absolutely no experience with actual boredom have to say about being bored?

But then I realized that I have plenty to say about staving off boredom.

And, not just because of the whole “expert on nothing who knows everything” bit (that’s how I describe myself when people ask me to sum myself up; accurate, right?).

I mean, someone who NEVER gets bored must be doing something right, right?

So I decided I’ll share with you my formula for avoiding boredom for the next five to ten years.

And, here you have it, Dumb Mom’s Guide to Staving off Boredom: Top Ten Ways to Stay Busy and Boredom Free for Years to Come

10. Just Dance. The video game. I do it every. Single. Day. And it is SO awesome. I’ve even lost weight doing it (not a lot, but still). And, if you find yourself inching close to getting bored while doing it, you can always make a video of yourself and enter it in this contest to win a grand. I thought about entering myself, but I’m so good at it now that I probably wouldn’t win. It’s like those girls who say they are “too pretty” to get dates? That’s me. I’m too good at Just Dance to win their little contest. But you might have a shot.

9. Do your taxes. What? Taxes are boring? Shut yo’ mouth! Taxes are a lot of things, but I refuse to believe that they are boring. But, I can see that many of you disagree with me on this point and to give me an opportunity to change your mind why don’t you enter my H&R Block At Home giveaway? Then you can at least rest assured that you are not gonna miss any deductions or wind up in jail because an itty bitty error in accounting caused you to cheat Uncle Sam outta $300,000. Because seriously, is there anything more boring than 5 to 10 in Club Fed?



8. Go to You Tube. And watch the part in Super Bad (please tell me you have seen this movie because it is HILARIOUS) when Seth gets hit by the car (the first time). It makes me laugh over and over and over again. Now, please note that Super Bad features a set of nerdy, sexually frustrated high school boys with serious cases of toilet tongue (meaning they curse like a couple of pirates) so don’t click on the link if you’re easily (or possibly even not so easily) offended, the language is pretty graphic.

7. Watch Tosh.0. Another way to waste a good thirty minutes laughing your chubby little butt cheeks off. You can catch it on Comedy Central every Wednesday night at 10:30 (or 9:30 if you live in one of those strange states between here and California). Or, if you’re one of the freaks of nature who don’t have cable television, you can just check it out on the Internet here. Be sure you check out the crap I said before about Super Bad being all naughty and offensive, this is sorta the same deal (only the cursing is pretty much bleeped out since it’s on TV and stuff) so if you’re “sensitive” just try one of the other 6 things on the list.

6. Send an apology on Facebook. You know to that chick in high school whose boyfriend you stole and then got her kicked outta the Recycling Club for throwing her soda can in the trash? Yep, you could probably kill like 20 minutes sending all of those people you wronged somehow messages on Facebook apologizing for being a mean girl so that when you send them a friend request they will accept it. Or you can go to imsorry.com and do it there (I honestly can’t even believe there is a service for this).

5. Go to Wal-Mart. You can eat up tons of time just “people” watching. And, you can test out all of the stereotypes you’ve ever heard about any one ever. Because for whatever reason, they all materialize at Wal-Mart.

4. Go to Wal-Mart and act like you belong there. I like to do this from time to time, just for fun. I put on my rattiest jammie pants and my slippers and I don’t comb my hair (or even bother to remove the curlers). I don’t put on makeup and I avoid most other forms of personal hygiene, too. Then, I don a shirt that’s WAY too small for me, paint my nails bright red with added rhinestones for extra bling, and I might even throw on one of those trendy little disposable plastic shower cap thingys. To make it more real I like to even grab #3 outta the bed and just rip his pajamas right offa his body. I don’t bother to change his diaper or dress him in any clothing or shoes so that his visibly soiled diaper is easily viewed (and smelled) by passersby. And then, I give him a pacifier, no, a bottle, of soda to bring along with us. Then, when we get to the store I drag him around it while he’s crying (you know with snot and everything) and I yell at him for it (since yelling at a baby will actually make them want to STOP crying). When I finally get up to the cash register I decide to put back at least four things (after they’ve been rung up and bagged, of course), I make it a point to talk on my cell phone the ENTIRE time, and, that’s right, AND I write a check! For half. I use a combination of a gift card and loose change to pay for the rest. I’m telling you it is so freakin’ fun and I look just like I belong there. If fear is a factor, here's a website where you can live vicariously through those of us willing to brave the possibly infected Wal-Mart waters: People of Walmart

3. Teach your toddler to sing. Not those silly, traditional nursery rhymes that will bore you to tears if you have to sing them over and over (I’m so sick of Old Macdonald I could hurl). You gotta teach him popular songs from the radio and then encourage him to sing them for you. I love #3’a rendition of Single Ladies and he even does the dance. So. Funny!

2. Read my blog. Duh.

1. Take a toddler on an outing. So that he can embarrass you with his inappropriately-loud-for-the-library voice and his inappropriately-ridiculous-to-be-coming-from-a-toddler words.

A lovely segue into this week’s Thursday Thank You.

A special thank you to the just-turned-two toddler of the house who has made the library off limits only moments after we were allowed back on the premises after getting our exorbitant fine paid off.

Thank you and you’re welcome.

Dear #3,

Please tell me this is not for real. I honestly can not believe you right now. I know that you are a little bit obsessed with the female gluteus maximus at the moment, but let me remind you that pointing to it, talking about it, or personally addressing it in any way while in public is highly inappropriate. It is not okay for you to shout, “MOMMY! WOOK AT HER BUTT! IS YUCKY!” when another mom bends down next to you at the library. I realize that you may have been given a much better glimpse of it than you ever imagined*, but that doesn’t make you clamoring to get my attention by increasing your voice and/or pointing more frantically and demanding that I, “WOOK AT IT MOMMY! WOOK AT HER BUTT!” okay in any way. And, for future reference, if I shush you by putting my finger to your lips, covering your mouth with my palm, or shoving your face into the floor that generally means that you need to cease and desist, IMMEDIATELY with what you’re saying. Do not pass go. Do not collect $200. Do not identify and announce the existence of butts in the immediate area. Just bring it down a notch. I realize that it can, at times, be difficult, but it may help if you ignore the urge to throw yourself on the ground beneath any kneeling butts to get yourself a better look. And, it may also help if you, when presented with an unnaturally large or slightly overexposed butt, just WHISPER your recognition of said butt’s arrival to just me, and remember that it’s cool if you want to talk about it later. Like, when we get in the car!. Because you know, it’s not the fact that you noticed, I mean frankly, we ALL noticed, it’s more the announcement, and it’s excessive volume that I’m struggling with here. I’d greatly appreciate your cooperation on this matter and hope that our library privileges will not be permanently revoked as a result of this incident.

XOXO,

Dumb Mom

P.S. I know that reading is not really your thing so I’ve included a diagram to ensure accurate transmission of this message.

Never do this...


*In #3’s much needed defense, the rump in question was quite noticeable for both size and ill fitting attire (aka her butt crack was in full view to him when she knelt down to pick out her books and he was obviously caught off guard by it. Obviously.). If you are reading this and you think that you may actually be the owner of the “YUCKY BUTT,” you may want to invest in a good set of high-waist mom jeans (it’s time you got yourself a pair), and/or an extra long tank top (you can get ‘em at Old Navy). Just to prevent visually assaulting toddlers thereby making them look like the bad guys.

Join us, won't you?!

Mama's Losin' It

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Birthday Doughnut

_MG_0483

That’s what we’re calling it.

Because, embarrassingly, last night, on the day of my sweet little pickle’s second birthday we (and by me, of course mean I, because, like Hubby likes to tell me, there’s not an I or a U in Mommy; a phrase he likes to bring out to play when he’s attempting to shirk the blame for things that are entirely or at least in part his fault) realized that we were wholly unprepared to celebrate it.

Not because we didn’t know it was coming.

And, certainly not because we didn’t care.

But, because seriously, this kid has already celebrated his birthday once (we had a family party) and he’s slated to celebrate it again (he’s having a “friends” party on Thursday) and I just can’t understand how my only-barely-just-turned-two year old son has squeezed no less than 3 birthday celebrations outta me.

I mean, I celebrate my birthday for a full week, but that’s different.

I’m paying for and organizing mine.

Okay, so maybe I’m not actually doing the paying part (that’s where Hubby comes in handy), but I’m definitely in charge of all levels of birthday party organization for every member of this household, myself included.

So, it’s only fair that I get to celebrate my day of birth with multiple organized events to which friends and family of different levels of association are invited.

Completely understandable.

But, for the technically-only-been-two-for-a-few-short-hours member of the family, it seems a bit excessive, right?

I know it’s my fault, but I’ve not figured out a good way to have only one party that will adequately accommodate the schedules and the social needs of all of our different levels of friends.

So…the two parties.

But, the third party, the one that spontaneously occurred on his actual birth date is the one I wasn’t anticipating.

After dinner when he announced that he was, “WEADY FOR DA CAKE AN DA ICE KEAM NOW!” all I could do was look at Dumb Dad and blink.

To which he responded, “Well, Mommy. Where’s the boy’s cake?”

Thanks for that, Hubby.

But, for throwing me so far under the bus I’ve still not figured out how to crawl out, he got to be the one to drive to Dunkin’ Donuts and get a “super-special-one-of-a-kind-ohmygoodnesscanyoubelieveit-birthday-surprise” for #3.

Luckily, doughnuts just so happen to be one of his top five most favoritest things on the planet, so it worked out perfectly.

He was so overjoyed about the presence of birthday doughnuts that he sang “Happy Birthday” to himself, twice, and he didn’t even seem to notice that no one bothered to give him a birthday gift.

Another failure that is so obviously my fault.

You know, since only I can select, purchase, wrap, and present a quality birthday gift for an I-can’t-believe-he’s-already two year old boy.

I love being needed, but these people (and by people I mean Dumb Dad) are taking it too far!

Next year I will be prepared.

Birthday cake and a gift.

And. I might even throw in a scoop or two of “ICE KEAM”. How ‘bout that?!

So much for Twenty-Ten being the year of the awesome.

Looks like I’m off to a bit of a rough start.

Anyway.

Thanks for all of the sweet birthday wishes for my little man and me yesterday; you guys are so sweet.

And. Don’t forget to enter my H&R Block At Home Giveaway here. It ends Friday!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Happy Happy Birthday

Baby.

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Only I’m afraid to say that you aren’t one anymore.

I’m sitting here crying my eyes out because of it.

And, it’s not just because the terrible part of the terrible twos is making an appearance (although hearing you say, “Mommy, you’s bad Mommy. You's a naughty mommy!” is quite enough to bring tears to my eyes).

It’s because you’re it for me.

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No more babies on board this mother ship.

And the idea of that makes me sad.

Saying adios to the baby years is harder than I thought it would be.

I’m not 100% ready to leave this part of my life behind (I guess I shoulda thought about all of this BEFORE I burned down the baby-making factory, right?).

I’m excited (and anxious, and apprehensive, and scared stiff) about what’s to come as you (and your brothers) get bigger.

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Maybe we can go on trips, or to movies, or to a freakin’ restaurant without having to make a mess of things while we shove the foot straight down our throats into our stomachs before you realize that you hate sitting in the highchair/eating their food/using a utensil/wearing clothing.

So there’s hope.

Right?

Someone please tell me I’m not always going to miss the baby phat wrists and the diaper thick badooka booty.

Please assure me that I will be happy when they finish elementary school, go to their first dance, have a girl over (hand selected by me, of course), or graduate high school (AHHHH!).

Please.

Before I lose my bloody-effing-closed-for-business-womb-connected mind.

Okay.

Deep breaths (backing slowly away from cliff now).

Instead I will focus on my sweet farm-animal-loving-booger-picking-perpetually-hungry-loud-talking/singing/laughing-just-turned-two toddler #3.

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I love you, Boogie (one of my many nicknames for him, a list that also includes, Sugie, Huggabugga, and Turtletoes).

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

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Mommy (and the rest of the Dumb Family) loves you bunches.

Please enjoy a special Dumb Mom Muvee in celebration of #3 (featuring one of his current most favoritest songs, Fireflies by Owl City. It’s right up there on his list along with Boom Boom Pow, by the Black Eyed Peas, 1-2-3, by Britney, and Love Story, by Taylor Swift. Obviously I've had quite an influence on his music choices.)!



Monday, January 18, 2010

Make New ifriends Monday: Deserted

No ifriend today.

For reasons I’m still not entirely clear about, she had to reschedule to another day. 

So.

With nothing else to post about planned, hows about we talk about ME!

Okay, not me, my kids.

Because they’re so friggin’ awesome it’s hardly even fair and I’m not sure I’ve told you smart they are.

Well, at least the one. 

#3.

He’s a whip I tell ya’.

The kid walked at 10 months (actually a little late for the Dumb Family, ‘cause #1 started at 8 months!).

And now, on the eve of his 2nd birthday he’s riding a Razor like one of the guys…

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And to think that a mere two years ago this is where he was at…

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But, it’s not just his physical accomplishments we have to celebrate.

Because, like I said before, the kid is SMART.  Like, borderline genius.

He does puzzles, he reads (aka memorizes them word for word), he can identify most of the planets (a huge feat considering my stance on outer space and space related products), and he’s not deterred by ANY form of child proofing device, including those silly little pill bottle things.

Most notably, he’s been talking since he was 12 months old.

And, I don’t mean a word or two here and there that sorta kinda sounds like milk or mama or train.

I’m talking SENTENCES.  Which morphed into PARAGRAPHS by the time he was 18 months.

Nowadays, he can say anything he wants.

He tells jokes, and stories, and reenacts things that happened during his day.

Oh…and the singing.

Look for this kid on American Idol one day, and he’s not gonna be doin’ no honestly-that-was-like-torture-Pants-on-the-Ground renditions either.

Okay, that’s possibly a little far fetched since the poor child sounds like an injured water fowl when he sings.

But still, for a soon-to-be two year old it’s just amazing that he gets most of the words right and on beat!

I mean, how many soon-to-be two year olds can sing Taylor Swift’s “Love Story” or Owl City’s “Fireflies” word for word?

And, you don’t even wanna get him started on the Jackson 5’s “Who’s Lovin’ You?”.

Recently I’ve discovered that in addition to being physically advanced and verbally expressive, he is also inventive.

Please feast your eyes on his latest discovery.

Glove Feet…

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They may not seem like the most functional item ever to be invented, but lemme tell ya, when you have the toe dexterity of a baby chimp (as is the case for #3) you need something that allows for flexibility and access in a way that socks don’t.

Going to market with these things people.

They’re the way of the future.

 

P.S. Don’t forget to shoot me an email at parentingbydummies[at]gmail[dot]com if you are interested in being an ifriend.

P.P.S Also, the link for our Cent Saving Saturday giveaway for H&R Block’s At Home tax preparation program can be found here.

P.P.P.S TOMORROW WE ARE THROWING A BIRTHDAY PARTY FOR #3 SO DON’T FORGET TO COME BACK AND JOIN IN THE FUN…NO BACHELOR POST (OKAY, MAYBE JUST A LITTLE ONE) WILL BE POSTED.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Cent Saving Saturday

Ahhh…

Is this thing on?

Hello…*bangs on imaginary microphone*

Does no one enjoy saving money?

I mean, I know it’s like 100% more fun to spend it, but, I’m talking about saving money on boring crap (like taxes and food and shelter and stuff) so you can buy stuff you really need (like shoes and handbags and visits to the spa).

Anyway, it’s fine if you don’t want my advice on how to organize your tax papers for your tax man.

I understand, it’s boring.

But, what if I helped you out with a great way to save on your taxes and get them prepared correctly and easily?

You don’t have to listen (but there is a giveaway involved).

You can navigate away now and go read about some juicy celebrity gossip (but there is a giveaway involved) or some fun, kid centered craft activity (BUT THERE IS A GIVEAWAY INVOLVED).

Or you can stick around (for my giveaway) and read a little bit about H&R Block At Home.

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It’s H&R Blocks replacement for their former at home tax preparation software, Tax Cut, and it’s a little bit awesome (not that I am recommending you do your own taxes, but…if you already do and feel confident in your skidizzels, then maybe this is for you).

Let me tell you that I am a wee bit biased about this product.

Not because they gave me a copy for free (although they did, just so you know*), but because before, when I was saying I worked for a national tax preparation company for a whole butt load of years, I was talking about them.

Yep, I used to be one of those people at the office with the big green square, so I have to admit that I have a bit of an affinity for this brand of software.

But, my already-attached-opinion aside, I have to admit (go ahead and kick me H&R Block) I have used other at home tax prep programs and I truly do like this one the best.

Here is H&R Block’s take on At Home Deluxe: It “is for taxpayers who own a home or have investments and includes everything taxpayers need to complete their federal and state taxes. In addition to the Basic features, Deluxe offers personalized tax guidance, advanced tools to maximize mortgage interest deductions and assistance on investment income and stock options”.

All true.

Here is Dumb Mom’s take on H&R Block At Home Deluxe:

  • There are tons of little question marks all over the place so if you’re not sure or you’re confused you can click on them and they’ll give you more info.
  • There is a frequently asked questions bar along the side that follows you from screen to screen and changes as a you go. It helps you to remember things you may have forgotten (like your student loan deduction that you really should never forget since you’ll be paying on it for the rest of your life) or clue you in to things you didn’t even know existed.
  • It is really easy to install and use and update. It doesn’t take forever to do so either (unless you have an ancient computer like the desktop over here at Casa de Dummies, and then I’m not sure what’s gonna happen).
  • You can prepare taxes for like 5 different people. So you can let your mother-in-law do her taxes at your house (read you can do them for her since that’s what she really wants anyway, right?). Or, you can use it for your teenage son who worked for the summer so he can get his $110 refund back (and have cash to take that tramp from school who won’t leave him alone out, which means maybe you wanna go ahead and NOT do his taxes).
  • It’s cheap. Okay, it’s not exactly cheap, but it is a good price for the quality and convenience you receive. You can get a copy of the At Home Deluxe version for $39.99 (on Amazon) and it includes a free federal e-file and a state download. Plus, they provide you audit support (in the form of an Enrolled Agent) for the off chance that you find yourself in that situation (although it does happen as Mama B shared with us last week). Not too bad when you consider that Turbo Tax is $49.99 and you have to pay extra for their Audit Defense coverage.

But, here is the absolutely most perfect reason to go with H&R Block At Home…

because you can win one right here on parenting BY dummies!

To enter all you have to do is:

  1. Be a PBD follower (these kinda perks are only available for my most awesome members).
  2. Leave a comment telling me how you normally get your taxes done.

Want Extra entries (1 entry for each activity)?

  1. Become a fan of H&R Block on Facebook. And leave me a comment that you did so I can go check (‘cause I totally will!).
  2. Follow me on Twitter @thenagainphoto.
  3. Tweet this giveaway.

Contest ends at 11:59pm PST on Friday, January 22, 2010, and the winner will be randomly selected and announced on next Saturday’s Cent Saving post.

Easy, no?

Good luck (and don't forget to read my small print)!



*PBD admits it’s Free Disclaimer: In order to provide a reliable review of the product H&R Block provided PBD with a copy of the software to prepare her own taxes with. They did not tell her she had to say they were awesome and no cold, hard cash exchanged hands. They are hooking one of PBD's readers up with a free copy because I told them you guys were awesome, shameless name droppers who appreciate free stuff. Don’t make me a liar people! Oh, and like I said before, if Uncle Sam comes a knockin' don't bother even telling me about it because I'm not getting involved in any kind of government-fraud-like madness. One piece jumsuits have never been my thing, I think it's my short torso...

Giving away two copies of the movie Extract starring Jason Bateman and Ben Affleck. Contest ends 4/2/10.
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