Friday, August 30, 2013

13 Songs My Parents Probably Shouldn't Have Let Me Listen To As a Kid

I was driving in my car yesterday, and the song "Dead Bite" by Hollywood Undead came on the radio. I adore this song. It's catchy, the beat is awesome, and I'm constantly finding myself singing, "Good night, sleep tight, Don't let the dead bite." That's when Hubby informed me that the song is about one guy hunting down and killing another guy, and possibly mass murdering many others. Dammit, I liked that song. No more playing it around the kids, that's for sure.

That got me thinking about songs that I listened to growing up that maybe my parents shouldn't have allowed, if they knew the lyrics. My research turned up some beauties, Inklingers. I'm about to take you on a trip down Memory Lane, back to your middle school dances and driving around in your parent's car on the weekends. Sing along, but make sure you actually take a look at some of the lyrics I'm posting- it will make your jaw drop to the floor.

These are in random order, of course, and I've included the videos (or close enough to the videos) to refresh your memories. Enjoy!


1. Semi-Charmed Life- Third Eye Blind

Ah, it's starting in your head already, isn't it? "Doo doo doo, doo doo-doo doo... I'm packed and I'm holding..." That first part should have done the song in, but no. It goes on to talk about cocaine ("I was taking sips of it through my nose"), sex ("She comes round and she goes down on me" and "How do I get back to the place where I fell asleep inside you") and comes right out and says, "Doin' crystal meth will lift you up until you break." I love this song, too- even saw them in concert when Hubby and I were still dating. Classic song that now, as a mom, I refuse to let my kids listen to. Ahh, the joys of teenagehood in the 90s.

2. Push It- Salt n' Pepa

I'm not even bringing up the obvious Salt n' Pepa song from the 90s, "Let's Talk About Sex"- that's on everyone's list of questionable songs. I'm going for "Push It". Not much to the song at all, lyrically speaking, but then you get to, "Better make it fast or else I'm gonna get pissed, Can't you hear the music's pumpin' hard, Like I wish you would, Now push it, Push it real good." I remember what I told my parents- they were talking about dancing on the dancefloor, duh. Play dumb. It always works. It's better than trying to explain to your parents that you know exactly what the song's talking about, right?

3. OPP- Naughty By Nature

Thursday, August 29, 2013

#RockTheLunchBox This School Year!

Y'all know I'm a tree-hugging hippy at heart. I buy organic food when I can, make things from scratch so I know what my family is eating, and try and make sure that my kids are eating healthy at every meal, which, at at ages 11 and 8, isn't easy some days.

So when Honest Kids, Stonyfield Farm, Annie's Homegrown and Organic Valley teamed together for the Rock the Lunchbox program, I was super-stoked to help them pass on the word. These brands were already some of my family's favorites, and putting together lunches for my kids using their products was not only fun, but I knew my kids would be eating healthy, as well.


With The Ginger's lunch, I chose a sandwich and apples with peanut butter, then added Bunny Grahams and Bunny Fruit Snacks from Annie's Homegrown, YoKids Squeezers organic yogurt, and Organic Valley single serving of milk. I loved the fact that I had every major food group covered, and how many organic products my son was eating. He loved "drowning" his bunnies in peanut butter, then saving them, just to plunge them into his mouth and wash it all down with milk he didn't have to stand in the lunch line to acquire. Boys...


Tuesday, August 27, 2013

What's in a Book Title? Everything... aka Book Excerpt #2

I realized that I haven't done a book teaser in a while for you all. Then, I realized that I haven't even released the name of the book to the public yet.

Today, y'all are in for a treat. Not only do you get the back cover synopsis of the book, but you get the name, too.

Feels like Christmas, doesn't it? Y'all should know that if I'm releasing the name and the back synopsis, the book release is right around the corner. Now it definitely feels like Christmas to me.

Without further ado, here's what Tatted Mom's Guide to NOT Screwing Up Your Kids is all about...

Motherhood is chaotic: Some days are filled with unicorns and fairy dust, and some days the unicorn craps on your brand new rug and the fairies are flying around, crashing into walls. Mainstream parenting books help with the unicorn and fairy dust days, but what happens when your kid drops the f-bomb in a crowded grocery store?

That's where Tatted Mom's Guide to NOT Screwing Up Your Kids comes into play, tackling situations in motherhood that you were definitely not warned about. Think of this book as your manual to the parenting problems that leave you throwing your hands up in the air, wondering if you are the only mom who goes through this craziness, and has you hiding in the back of your closet with a bottle of moscato and a cheesecake (we've all been there).

Tatted Mom's Guide to NOT Screwing Up Your Kids includes:

Friday, August 23, 2013

7 Things to Keep In Mind When Joining an Online Mom Group

I have been a member of several online mom groups over the years. In fact, I wrote about What Online Mom Groups Have Taught Me a little over a year ago when I could not peel myself away from the computer. I forced myself to leave that mom site (kicking and screaming, might I add) because my blood boiled way to damn much over what these women posted. I have since joined a smaller, tamer one, but good grief, the similarities are countless.

Why join an online mom group? There are several reasons:
  1. To "meet" other moms, even in a virtual setting.
  2. To create a support system.
  3. To get or give advice about motherhood.
  4. To feed the little drama monster that lives deep down inside you.
If you have never been a member of an online mom group, you should- just for the experience. Whenever you get a group of women in a small space (even a virtual one) that inevitably includes at least one woman in each of the following categories: opinionated, under-sexed, over-hormoned, catty, bitchy, naive, controversial, know-it-all, know-nothing, crazy, and/or has-to-be-the-center-of-attention, the result is pure anarchy. If you can manage to sit back and view it all as your own personal soap opera, it's fun. If you find yourself getting sucked into the drama, it's time to leave.

When making the decision to join an online mom group, there are definitely some things you should keep in mind:

1. Think before you post. This applies to posting a question or posting an answer to someone else's question. Ask yourself if the advice or statement you are about to give is worth the possible 23 women who will take offense to your statement and berate you. No subject is safe. Not even if you want to post about a horrible serial killer who was just arrested and how thankful you are that the streets are now a little safer. Chances are, one woman's cousin's brother's next door neighbor's hair stylist's baby daddy was a serial killer, and she'll let you know that serial killers are people with feelings, too, and your statement was rude and hurtful.

2. Posting pictures of naked kids is NOT cool. I don't care if your kid has a rash right next to their junk- take the kid to the emergency room or google that shit. Under no circumstances are you to post a picture of

Monday, August 19, 2013

When Blogging Alter Egos and Secret Identities Collide

I've realized as the release for my upcoming book draws near, my two worlds are beginning to collide. Since I began blogging back in 2010, my blog posts have been signed 'Tatted Mom'. I made the decision back then to not use my real name in posts, and never my kids' names or faces. Now, 3 years later, I've held true to keeping my kids anonymous, but my alter ego is no longer a secret.
Pic courtesy of io9

Basically, I've become more of an Iron Man blogger, with the entire world knowing that I'm Tony Stark in the exoskeleton, instead of living my days as Bruce Wayne and my nights as Batman, and no one ever connecting the dots. I'm becoming okay with this. I like Tony Stark. He's quirky and sarcastic, much like me.

It really got me thinking as to what makes 'Tatted Mom' different than me, Morgan, or if there even is a difference anymore after 3 years of my two lives slowly melting together. I decided to list it all out. This post is great for the newbies to Inklings- especially those who know Morgan, but not Tatted Mom. This will be fun for y'all.

Tatted Mom

1. 32 year old mother to The Girl and The Ginger, elusive children who only ever appear in pictures with their backs facing the camera, or their faces covered.

2. Sarcastic, highly opinionated, and not afraid to speak her mind.

3. Strange sense of humor that 72% of readers don't actually get (okay, so that percentage is completely made up and is an example of her strange sense of humor). Those who get it stick around so she can make them shoot coffee out of their noses every morning by laughing at new posts. Those who don't get it either stick around because they want to get it, because they absolutely hate it and have to see what vile, wretched thing she has to say next, or they leave and never come back. She doesn't cry when those people who don't get her, leave.

4. Has a potty mouth.

5. Gives great advice in very unique, often coated in sarcasm, ways.

6. Very honest and open about the questions she's asked or the topics she writes about.

7. Married to Hubby, who is just as sarcastic and quick witted as she, so their banter leaves many readers

Monday, August 12, 2013

Violin Lessons and Volleyball Tryouts: This Mom's Transition from Elementary School to Middle School Life

Today is the first day of volleyball tryouts for The Girl. At 5'3" tall with 110 pounds of muscle and only in the sixth grade, we've already been approached by the basketball and soccer coach about having her play those sports later in the year. We were warned then that the coach for the volleyball team was partial to the older kids- seventh and eighth graders, so we did what any family of a sixth grader who really wants to make the volleyball team does...

We practiced all weekend long. I played volleyball for four years in high school, so I was happy to teach The Girl the basics, and we even had fun doing it as a family. As we practiced, I couldn't help but think...

Elementary school life is so much easier than middle school life.  For my family, the difference between the two is like night and day.

Take The Ginger's upcoming week (he's still in elementary school, just starting the third grade): He has his GATE (Gifted and Talented Education) class on Thursday, and that's during school hours. That's it. The first PTO meeting at his school is Tuesday afternoon, but if we all can remember last year's run in with the PTO, and the same women are in charge again this year, I'm not quite sure I will be participating.

The Girl? Volleyball tryouts Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, then violin lessons on Friday- all after school. ALL of her days this week, with the exception of Wednesday, will end way after 5pm. Her day starts at 6am. And she has chosen to do all of this.

I guess she's following in my footsteps as an overachiever. You think?

I know there are Tiger Moms out there who taught their children Russian at the age of 2, how to play the

Friday, August 9, 2013

My Dirty Laundry Parenting Philosophy

The Ginger came downstairs last night soaking wet and wrapped in a towel, just having finished his nightly shower. He stood at the end of the sofa until my candy crushing ways allowed for a pause to look up.
Picture from Grumpy Cat Pics

The Ginger: Do you see anything wrong with this picture?
Me: Yeah. You're getting water all over my floor.
The Ginger: Well, I don't have any underwear OR pants.
Me: Look in your drawer. You have underwear and/or pants.
The Ginger: No, I don't. They are right there (pointing to a dirty clothes basket in the hallway), where I put them 2 days ago. And they still aren't clean.
Me: It wasn't two days ago, and I told you on Sunday to bring me your clothes for the week. Wednesday is not Sunday.
The Ginger: But I need clean underwear, and you haven't done my laundry.
Me: And I don't have to do your laundry, with that attitude. Sunday is laundry day. You told me you didn't need clothes washed, so I took your word for it.
The Ginger: URRRRGHHHH...

And he turned around and made little wet foot steps back down the hallway and up the stairs.

Some of you may find this conversation between my child and I less than desirable. I might come across to some as a lazy mom who doesn't do her children's laundry. To others, you might see me as an emotionless, rule-abiding authoritarian type. And to others, I know you are thinking that a swift light smack to the mouth is exactly what my son needed to cure his attitude.

I see this story as a prime example of a few things:

Monday, August 5, 2013

9 Things for a Stay-at-home Mom to Do While the Kids are In School

Pic courtesy of InfoCentre
It's that time of year again- Back to School time; The time of year that stay-at-home moms of school aged children count down to. While I have enjoyed my kids being home during the summer, and will miss them, the quiet house is welcomed... with open arms... and a huge smack on the lips... with some over-the-shirt fondling, perhaps, just to show my appreciation.

With a list a mile long of errands to run and chores to do and an empty house to actually accomplish the things on that list, I find myself reveling in the quiet. I have 6 hours until my son gets home from school. 6 whole hours. My list may take 3 or 4 hours. What on earth can I possibly do with the remaining time?

9 Activities for a Stay-at-Home Mom While the Kids Are in School

  1. Sleep. Nap on the couch, in my bed, in the middle of the floor for all I care. No fighting siblings, no video game noises in the background, no pokes to the arm followed by a whispering voice saying, "Mom, I know you are trying to sleep and all, but this is super important. Can I have a pack of fruit snacks?" Dead, bleeding or on fire. Those are my specific instructions for when one of my kids should wake me when I'm attempting to nap. Fruit snacks are not dead, bleeding, or on fire.
  2. Run around naked. Okay, so I wouldn't run around my house naked. I'm a firm believer that running is only necessary if the Zombie Apocalypse has begun and there are zombies behind you. So, I'd be more inclined to lounge around naked, answer emails naked, maybe even blog naked (this just got awkward for you, didn't it?).
  3. Eat whatever in the hell I want to. No hiding in the closet to grab a cookie, or heading to the bathroom with a bowl of ice cream just to escape the "Mom, can I just have a little bite, please?" I can eat whatever I want, whenever I want, where ever I want. 
  4. Have a mopped floor that stays clean for more than 2.5 seconds. Mondays are my floor

Friday, August 2, 2013

Worst. First Day of School Morning. Ever.

Yesterday was the kids' first day of school.

Worst. First Day of School Morning. Ever.

Let's start off with how The Girl woke up with not 1, not 2, but 3 new pimples on her face, more than likely from stressing about school. Not the way you want to start off your middle school career. So, I pushed the My Daughter is Only 11 Years Old aside for the sake of the My Daughter is Starting a Brand New School Today and put some concealer on her new friends. No foundation. No powder. Just concealer. We will be buying her tinted zit cream or moisturizer in the near future.

As far as the home life section of our First Day of School morning, that was the only hiccup. Apparently, the Fates were just warming us up for what was about to happen.

The Girl started a new school, and it's not conveniently situated on base, and right by the house, like The Ginger's school is. So, we decided that she would try the whole riding-the-bus thing this year. Her bus is supposed to pick her up at around the same time The Ginger's school starts, and as her bus stop is right beside his school, I felt this worked out perfectly. And, it gets both the kids out of the house at the same time, despite the difference in times that their schools start. That's great for my sanity in the mornings.

So, because it was the first day of school, and Hubby is on leave from work right now, we all decided to head to the school that morning. Hubby walked with The Ginger to where his class was lining up, and I walked with The Girl to her bus stop, where 4 other kids stood. Of course, being a middle schooler now, she was embarrassed to have me stand with her (as I was the only parent there), so I walked back to The Ginger's school, but stood where I could see her.
Picture courtesy of arts.ri.gov

Her bus was supposed to be there at 7:29. The Ginger's school starts at 7:40. 7:30 came and went. Then, The Ginger's bell rang. The Girl was still at the bus stop, and while several busses had driven by the bus stop, not a single one of them stopped. We helped The Ginger take all of his supplies into his classroom, and when we came outside, The Girl, and these 4 other kids, were still sitting there. So, Hubby and I hid in the shadows like ninjas and waited...

And waited...

And waited...

At 8:05, we saw the kid with the blue mohawk (awesome, by the way) talk to his mom, who had driven to