Thanks to Viva® Vantage® for sponsoring this post and for helping me clean up my messes!
We sometimes have an odd way that we clean our kitchen floor. We turn it into an ice skating rink, except instead of ice, we cover it with water and instead of skates, we use paper towels. Yes, paper towels!
I pour a bunch of water all over the floor, wrap the kids’ feet in paper towels and let them slide around the room until the floor is (mostly) clean and (mostly) dry.
We don’t do this often because it tends to end in someone wiping out or getting out of the designated “skating area” and soaking the adjoining hardwood. Plus, the scooting usually causes the paper towels to rip pretty quickly so we end up going through multiple rolls! But when I DO let them do it, it’s always a lot of fun. Until the tears and/or yelling begin.
When Viva® Vantage® asked me to try out their paper towels, I thought I’d give it the floor skating test. The boys were already asleep so I did the test myself. No wonder the kids laugh so loud – skating around the kitchen was quite entertaining (and I didn’t even fall)! And the best part: I didn’t have to keep rewrapping my feet because the paper towels stretch, so they didn’t rip!! I only went through a small part of one roll during my test. Score! Speaking of score, maybe I should give them hockey sticks next time they skate the floor clean. Or maybe not.
I shared this idea recently with some fellow bloggers at the Viva® Vantage® 7-Day Switch Up Party. It was a great event where we learned more about Viva® Vantage® while having loads of fun!
We started off the day by decorating glasses with paint pens. Getting to sit around and “color” was pretty fun, even though my glass was the equivalent of a stick figure to the Mona Lisa masterpieces around me.
Next we prepped food while learning some great uses for Viva® Vantage®. I never knew I could put a paper towel under a cutting board to keep it from slipping on the counter.
One of my favorite tips was using the paper towels as a colander, especially because it seems like my colander is always dirty when I need to use it!
It wasn’t all work and no play, of course. We got to devour all the yummy food. Nom nom nom!
Then it was back to work again. Doing dishes! But the great scrubbing power of the paper towels made cleaning a piece of cake. I for one hate using a nasty old sponge that’s been sitting around. With the sponge-like absorbency of Viva® Vantage®, sponges can be a thing of the past!
We were all sent home with rolls of Viva® Vantage® to do our own 7-Day Switch Up. My favorite feature of these towels when using them at home – besides the fact that they STRE-E-ETCH – is that they don’t leave any icky lint behind when cleaning glass or mirrors.
I invite you to kick off your own “7-Day Switch Up” by visiting http://bit.ly/1T3mdFX for a Viva® Vantage® coupon to purchase and try the product yourself. After experiencing the stretchy-strength and great scrubbing power of Viva® Vantage®, return to the website to dish about your switch and enter for a chance to instantly win a $100 gift card!
Here are some 7-Day Switch Up tips:
Ditch the bulky colander in favor of a paper towel. Place veggies and fruit on a sheet of Viva® Vantage® paper towels under a running faucet to function as a strainer; the stretchy-strength will keep the towel intact when wet.
Keep lettuce fresh longer by wrapping a paper towel around a head of lettuce to soak up excess moisture.
Hand wash and dry wine glasses and other stemware using the cloth-like texture of Viva® Vantage® paper towels for a sparkling finish.
Replace the need for a vegetable scrubber by using the great scrubbing power of Viva® Vantage® paper towels to properly clean mushrooms, potatoes, etc.
Need to chill white wine quickly? Don’t dilute it with ice; wrap a damp paper towel around the bottle and put in the freezer to chill rapidly.
Slip a damp paper towel under your cutting board to prevent it from shifting while slicing and dicing.
Need to get that grime off your stove? The great scrubbing power of Viva® Vantage® paper towels allows you to clean the toughest messes and restore your kitchen’s shine.
Thanks Viva® Vantage® for sponsoring this post and inviting me to participate in this campaign (and par-taaay!). While this is a sponsored post written on behalf of Viva® Vantage®, all thoughts and opinions are my own! Photo credit to Big Bash Photo.
When Jimmy was a toddler, he became quite obsessed with Halloween. One day he announced that he wanted to have the scariest house in the neighborhood. I took that challenge and ran with it. I started stockpiling terrifying and gruesome décor.
November 1st became my “Black Friday.” I’d be up bright and early ordering discounted items online and waiting at the party store when it opened to clear out their clearance section.
I finally had to curb my enthusiasm for buying all things Halloween – because my storage room was full (and my bank account empty!). But we still look forward to the most spooktacular day of the year.
After shopping for all things scary, I prided myself on being the bravest “Mummy” around, but once when I reached in this bin to grab a decoration that was under some costume capes, I was turned into a total scaredy cat!
What do you think had me so terrorized???
No, it wasn’t the monster hand that frightened me.
It was something
The not-so-scaredy cat, Mushu, wasn’t startled at all. He was just annoyed that I woke him. That’ll teach me to make sure it is JUST black capes before I stick my hand in next time…
Filed under the “things I never thought I’d have to say” category…
“Don’t hit your brother with the cat!!!!!”
Don’t worry, it isn’t Mushu.
Mushu may not have been afraid when I reached in the bin, but I think he met his match.
I always loved the “spot the differences” game.
Brownie really enjoyed this scratch behind the ears.
She just didn’t know it was going to cost an arm and a leg.
She still owes us the leg.
Notice anything unusual in this “Trunk or Treat” photo? No, not the flying white witch. Or the giant cockroach. Or the freaky looking face to the left of Greg (although I don’t remember that being there when I took the photo…hmm…). Check out Eric’s “bag” for collecting his candy.
Yes, it is an empty ravioli box. Not decorated, not disguised, not even tucked in flaps. Just a ravioli box.
Buying a costume for trick-or-treating is always a highlight of the season but some costumes can cost an arm and a leg (and not the kind used for Brownie’s back scratch!). I’m sure one or two of you has heard of a little movie called Frozen. 😉 I’m also sure it will be THE costume of choice for most of the younger set this year. My kids are unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how many times I’ve avoided hearing “Let It Go”) past the Frozen infatuation. While they are more into chilling thrilling zombies than chilly silly snowmen, I know many of you are knee deep in Elsa-and-Anna-land, so I’m teaming up with Kandoo and some of my favorite bloggers on Instagram to co-host an epic Frozen Halloween costume giveaway. What Elsa could be better? (ba-dum-ching) And there’s a gift card prize too – for all the thawed boys and ghouls.
We’re giving away three Frozen Halloween costumes and a $100 Amazon Gift card! I can hear the squeals from here!
Complete the form below to enter. Four winners will be chosen to receive one of the prizes. Must be 18 years of age to enter. Giveaway ends at Midnight on Saturday, October 11, 2014.
Be sure to Instagram your kids in their favorite Halloween costumes using #FrozenHalloween. We’ll see you there!
The “Most Wonderful Time Of The Year” back to school commercial has always been one of my favorites. I am the mean Mom who usually taunts my kids by singing that song as they are grumbling about the dwindling days of summer. They looooove me for it.
This year is different. I honestly haven’t given “back to school” much thought yet. I’m completely pre-occupied by “off to college.”
The past school year was full of “lasts” for Jimmy. Last homecoming, last football game, last wrestling match, last day as a “child,” last prom, last day of high school, last trip with high school friends. Each last made me sad.
Soon there will be lots of exciting firsts for Jimmy. First night with a roommate, first time in the all-you-can-eat dining hall, first college lecture hall, first frat party, first time putting quarters in a washing machine. And that makes me happy(except maybe the frat party).
There will also be firsts for me. First night not being able to say goodnight, first time having an empty bedroom in the house, first time saying “party of 5” in a restaurant, first time not needing the 3rd row of seats in the car… I realize it’s not actually the “first” time for those things, but they were the exception. Now they will be the norm. And that makes me sad.
As the “to buy” list gets smaller and smaller, I feel like the “makes me cry” list gets larger and larger.
You know it’s getting really bad when a song called “Ain’t It Fun” brings me to tears every time it is on the radio.
“Ain’t it fun living in the real world
Ain’t it good being all alone
Ain’t it good to be on your own…
Don’t go crying to your mama ’cause you’re on your own in the real world.”
I’m trying a new technique to help with my separation anxiety – chunking time. Instead of thinking about Jimmy being at college until next May, I will only let myself think about how long until I see him next.
6 weeks until parents’ weekend.
Then 2 weeks until fall break.
Then 5 1/2 weeks until Thanksgiving break.
Then 2 1/2 weeks later, winter break will bring him home for 3 1/2 weeks!
Then 9 1/2 weeks until spring break.
Finally, less than 6 weeks until he’s home for summer! That will be my new “Most Wonderful Time of the Year!”
See? Nothing but single digits! Piece of cake, right?? Wrong. But it is helping. A little (said while a tear is running down my cheek…).
It’s still going to take everything in me not to burst into a big old ugly cry right in front of his new dorm-mates. But I’m determined to give him a hug, tell him how proud I am and how much I love him with a smile on my face*. And leave him to his firsts. And unfortunately me to mine.
Since everyone else IS already thinking about back-to-school, I’m teaming up with Boogie Wipes to offer an awesome Back-to-School Giveaway for kids and moms!
Three lucky winners will receive a backpack stocked with school supplies (and Boogie Wipes) and a Mommy Clutch – full of everything moms need (including gift cards!)
How to Enter
From following Boogie Wipes on social media to instagramming a picture of your favorite Boogie Wipes products, there are dozens of ways to enter – and a few ways to enter every single day.Complete the form below to get started.
Giveaway is live Tuesday, August 5, 2014 until midnight on August 22, 2014. US and Canada residents only (excluding Quebec). Three winners will be randomly chosen and notified via email. Momopolize received no compensation for sponsoring this event, and is not responsible for the delivery of the prize. Prize delivery is the sole responsibility of Boogie Wipes.
I am currently migrating my blog to a self-hosted site and redesigning the layout, and in the process my email subscribers have not been receiving notifications of new posts. I probably should have titled this “technically challenged” since that’s what I am (you’d never know my college major way-back-when was…computer programming!). I just rectified the problem so wanted to send out a quick post with links to recent posts that you didn’t receive! If you could do me a favor and leave a “got it” comment on this post, it would put my mind at ease that I actually DID get the subscriber list moved over properly!
Just click on the titles below to read the recent posts I’ve published:
Are You Kidding Me???: My Erma Bombeck “You Can Write” moment with Dan Zevin, the 2013 winner of the Thurber Prize for American humor and the 2014 National Society of Newspaper Columnists “Humor, over 50,000 Circulation” winner. Part 1 of my experience at the Erma Bombeck Writer’s Workshop. I promise to post Part 2 before the next workshop…in 2016!
Also, I did a fun experiment on Facebook asking for one word comments that I will combine into a blog post next week. From this experiment, I realized I have cruel, heartless fans on my FB page. Just kidding, but boy did they give me some doozy words to weave into a post. It’s not too late to participate! Just click here to go to the FB status and leave your one word comment!
While we are talking social media, can you give me a like or follow?? Social media fans are like the bread crumbs that keep a blogger going!
I’m also on LinkedIn but am so clueless on there I don’t even know the URL to get directly to my profile. You can search Angela McKeown Momopolize though.
As I approach my 2 year blogging anniversary (later this month), I just want to take a moment to thank all of you who are loyal readers! I have the best followers around (but don’t tell the other bloggers – I don’t want to make them jealous)!!!
Hopefully my site will be all “perdy” very soon when I finally pick a fancy schmancy theme and figure out how to use it (so it may be a while. A long while…)!
I’m not afraid of the Boogie Man jumping out from under my bed or hiding in my closet. My fear of the Boogie Man comes from seeing him in broad daylight, in a school classroom.
I was volunteering in the kindergarten classroom when I looked across the room to see my son (who shall remain nameless) “picking a winner,” if you know what I mean.
And that was the day I realized I was the Boogie Man’s mother.
It was also the day I gained much respect for kindergarten teachers once I noticed that over half the class was digging or scratching some body part they shouldn’t be.
Snot’snot funny. Oops. Missed a space there.
But you know what is fun(ny)? Winning a $50 gift card from Walmart! I’ve admitted time and time and time again that I’m a Walmartian (and belong on the People of Walmart website). You can also win a Boogie Wipes prize pack, because – let’s face it – before kidS learns what it means to blow through their noses, colds usually end up causing a tarred and feathered face when using tissues. I’m surprised no one has marketed booger glue – when that stuff dries, it’s stronger than cement and super glue combined.
Pardon me while I go hurl.
I should probably tell a joke to get the mucus mucilage memory erased from your brain. So…How do you make a tissue dance?
You put a little boogie in it.
If you enjoyed this post, you may also enjoy What Does the Kid Say??? which is a compilation of hysterical toddler speak including sneezes referred to as “Bless Yous.”
In celebration of Great Grape Boogie Wipes being sold at Walmart, I’m teaming up with Boogie Wipes to offer the Great Grape Summer Giveaway! One winner will be drawn each week for eight weeks and will receive a $50 Walmart gift card and a Boogie Wipes prize pack.
How to Enter
From following some of our favorite bloggers on social media to instagramming a picture of your Great Grape purchase at Walmart, there are dozens of ways to enter – and a few ways to enter every single day.
Giveaway is live Tuesday, July 8, 2014 until midnight on Tuesday, September 2, 2014. US and Canada residents only. One winner will be chosen each week and will be notified via email. Momopolize received no compensation for sponsoring this event, and is not responsible for the delivery of the prize. Prize delivery is the sole responsibility of Boogie Wipes.
There is a new Mother of All Meltdowns site! No Mother Is Perfect is a community for the perfectly imperfect mother! A place where you can let your guard down and talk about the meltdowns, struggles, and less rosy aspects of being a mom… I am participating in the blog tour by interviewing the authors of Mother of All Meltdowns (MOAM) to help celebrate! Please enjoy these hilarious examples of “Toddler Speak,” plus they share their favorite tweets with us. Make sure you keep reading to the end for a fabulous (and I mean fabulous!) giveaway!
When my kids would pronounce a word incorrectly, or say a completely different word, I always called it Toddler Speak. I could name enough words to come up with an entirely new language, but my favorite is Jake’s word for Chick-Fil-A. He used to call it “Chicken Leg” and I still do to this day, even though he is 15. I asked the MOAM authors for THEIR favorites, and the answers are wackier than the lyrics for “What Does the Fox Say?” (Maybe Fraka-kaka-kaka-kaka-kow is toddler fox speak?)
Tamara (Like) Camera Scarlet calls the crust of sandwiches – “the crotch.” I have no idea how this started but since we’re immature, we never corrected her. It’s just so cute! Anyway, she was at a friend’s house for a play date, and her friend’s mom does not speak English as a first language. She was VERY confused when she was making Scarlet a sandwich and Scarlet asked very innocently, “Will you cut my crotch off?” (This is probably why we should correct our kids, right?)
Kiss My List When my daughter was a toddler, she would ask for a fork and knife, but she hadn’t mastered the “r” sound. So my husband and I found it quite amusing to hear our two year old ask for a f—ckin’ knife. And while we’ve told her this story, we do not allow her to mispronounce that phrase anymore.
The Golden Spoons Once, when my middle daughter was learning to read and we were in a restaurant, she wanted to order Coke which I don’t usually et them do, but this time I gave in. She proudly and loudly mispronounced “Coke” and announced, “Yay! Mommy said I could have Cock!!”
Menopausal Mother The funniest thing my son said when he was little was he used to call hotels ” Ho and Tells”, which is something entirely different than a place to rest your head at night….or is it? HAHAHA!
Fining Ninee My son says a lot of words weirdly because he’s got a pretty severe speech and language disorder but I think the cutest one these days is his word for butt, which is “my bommommb.” He also says “my peenee” for penis, which is pretty awesome.
Science of Parenthood When my son was about 2, he went on a milk strike. And then one frigid winter day, I made him some hot chocolate. He loved it. So I wondered if he liked it hot, maybe he’d drink it cold. So I mixed some Nestle Quick in some milk and told him it was “cold” hot chocolate. He downed every drop. End of milk strike. We call it cold hot chocolate today, and our son is 8.
The Mom Café Funniest thing: My daughter STILL calls her sneezes “Bless yous”. She is almost 11, and I’m seriously not sure she even realizes they are called sneezes. Every time she sneezed when she was little, I would say “Bless YOU!”- it stuck.
No Holding Back It may not be the funniest thing ever, but I think it’s hilarious that my daughter thought Mac n cheese was called “Monkey cheese.” To this day, we still call it that! And, when I was pregnant with my twins, my four year old son came up to me, put his hands right on my boobs and said “Mommy are these the babies heads?” I still laugh about that.
Pink When The funniest thing “lately” (I say lately because she always comes up with crazy stuff) is that when the kids are playing Minecraft on the iPad, Addy doesn’t want to be left out. She screams and screams to the top of her voice that she also wants “EYE CRAPT” It took me a while to realize she was talking about the game and not using slang for soiling her clothing.
Tao of Poop My daughter calls The Statue of Liberty “The Statue of Lovely.”
Writer Mom Blog My daughter called the computer “puter” and we thought it was adorable until she went to Kindergarten and wondered why other kids weren’t calling it that! My son called the Playstation the “Gas Station.” The first time he called it that it took quite awhile to figure out what he wanted.
Baking in a Tornado When my son was little he called water “addle.” I felt like such a failure as a mom because it took me forever to figure out what he was saying. But the day he asked for “addle-moon” I felt like a mom success as I grabbed the dish of watermelon and passed it to him. We don’t use the term but every now and then I’ll ask him if he wants an “addle bottle”. He just looks at me and rolls his eyes.
Another Jennifer Blog My younger son, who is 5, has had some great mispronunciations that have stuck. We routinely say “lusually” instead of usually, ‘hobsital” instead of hospital and “up-tie-side-down” instead of upside down. My older son, who is 8, mistakenly called Domino’s Pizza “Checkers” one time. That has stuck as well!
The Liebers My youngest used to call strawberries “Strawbeebees.” Actually, since I mentioned it out loud he’s started calling them that again! My daughter used to say cu-buzz instead of because. She also said laa-loo instead of I love you. She still uses that one when she’s being cutesy.
My Skewed View My son called yesterday “lasterday”, the first time he said it I thought maybe it was a one shot deal but it stuck. We still say lasterday instead of yesterday 5 years later.
Tidbits from the Queen of Chaos My daughter used to call spaghetti, skabetti and My 4yo called the computer the ‘puter. We still sometimes call them those as a joke.
Janie’s Confessions of a Mommyaholic My three year old started to tell me that in this past winter’s polar vortex weather she needed her “babing suit” aka as her bathing suit to wear. She was trying to be cute and funny making me laugh about wanting to wear a bathing suit in the freezing cold, but the way she said it was even more adorable mispronouncing it. Totally can’t help but smile thinking about it and definitely can’t help but want to say it that way, too.
A Dish of Daily Life We’ve always let the kids pick their birthday dinners. Growing up in New England, lobster has always been one of those special occasion meals for our kids. When my youngest son was little, he always picked lobster, but for some reason he called it “the pink meat.” One year his dinner request was for “the pink meat” and cantaloupe. Quite the combination!
Urban Moo Cow My son is bilingual in English and Italian. When we lived in Brooklyn, there was a point in time when he would seemingly curse on the elevator all the time. In Italian, “fare la cacca” means “to poop” and “bimbo” means boy baby. This is basically how it would go:
H: Fuck-a-cah? Me: Fai la cacca? (Are you pooping?)
H: Fuck a cookie! Me: FAI LA CACCA? [enunciating]
H: Fuck a! Fuck a cah!! Bimbo fuck a cookie!
I definitely got some weird looks. Even just “bimbo” would prompt sidelong glances.
English was no better, frankly. At one point he became obsessed with the nursery rhyme Hickory Dickory Dock from an Elmo book my mom gave him for Christmas. (Thanks, Mom. Always knew you’d get your revenge.)
H: More crack? Me: You want to hear about the clock?
H: Yeah, crack! [5,673 readings of Hickory Dickory Dock]
H: Mamma! More more crack! Me: No more clock, lovie.
H: (Screaming) MORE CRACK. MAMMA CRACK!
Four Hens and a Rooster The one that sticks out in my mind that we DO still use is “The Big Show” for Toys R Us. I have NO idea why my (now) 15 year old started it calling it that when she was 2 or 3, except maybe the lights, toys, etc but the Rooster and I still will say “hey – I have to go the Big Show and pick up a gift.
Home on Deranged The funniest thing to hear our almost 2 year old say wrong is her own last name. It’s supposed to be Swedoski (sweh-dah-ski), but, at her lovely young age, it comes out as “Pidossi” (Peh-dah-see). It’s really hilarious on video. And I told my husband I’m thinking of changing my name.
Lemon Drop Pie My daughters have always had excellent language skills, so much so that when my oldest was only four she taught the baby not to say “wawee” but to clearly say “water.” They take after my husband; when I was little, my mom was a member of a woman’s church group called “Ladies’ Aid.” I asked her, “Are we going to Lemon’s Aid?”
***FAVORITE TWEETS AND QUOTES***
Menopausal Mother: “Dawned on me I left all my bras and underwear in my dresser drawer at the Marriott….well that was certainly a fun call to make to the hotel…”
Pink When: From @ComedyTruth “If you can’t handle me at my Amanda Bynes, you don’t deserve me at Beyoncé”
A Dish of Daily Life: “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t–you’re right.” ~ Henry Ford
Janine’s Confessions: I would rather get a colonoscopy rather than go shoe shopping with my husband and kids again!!
The Mom Café: From @KateWhineHallMy son just yelled “MOM!” seven times while I was taking a shower. Haha, like I was going to answer that.
Baking In a Tornado: I don’t know if this is my favorite, but this happened when I first started using Twitter and didn’t know what I was doing. I had about 50 followers (no idea how) including one (only one, not both) of my sons. I somehow thought I was only tweeting to him when I tweeted “call your mom”. Next thing I know I’m getting about 25 tweets from strangers saying things like “done”, “ok”, “I will” and “just did”. I think a lot of moms were happy to receive unexpected phone calls that day. Of course this mom never heard from her kid.
No Holding Back: This is one of my favorite tweets ever… it was in the midst of a really funny twitter convo with some of my fave peeps. We were having a moms night in on twitter. @TamaraCamPhoto @JanineHuldie @RaisingReagan @katbiggie haha! My kids don’t fart a lot. It’s a cruel joke because farting always makes me laugh.
Kiss My List: “Boy: Look Mom! You can see my heart beating through my chest. Jeez, eat a donut, kid. @kissmylist” I sent this tweet almost a year ago, and the boy has grown taller but no less transparent.
Tamara (Like) Camera: I don’t know my favorite tweet but I did that thing where you find your first tweet ever. This was mine: “Will someone inform Bob Weir that we’re dating? I don’t think he knows yet.” What a thing to say! Although I do love Bob Weir.
Four Hens and a Rooster: One of the big highlights was when Ashley Judd and I got into a twitter conversation a couple of years ago after that “puffy face” thing. I thanked her for having the cajones to tell the press to shove it and it went from there.
Home On Deranged: “Had a sleeve of peanut butter sandwich cookies for dinner. Don’t get mad. The 2 year old got a Lunchable. #highfive @HolyHorrible”
Lemon Drop Pie: “A mother’s love: giving most of my churro to my 8 year old daughter, who then doesn’t go to sleep until well after 9:30. #finallymetime”
Crayon Marks and Tiger Stripes: “I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. ~Picasso”
My Skewed View: “The boy is re-enacting the Civil War. Taped a butter knife to the end of his rifle and is running around the house (galloping on his horse). @jenkehl”
Tidbits from the Queen of Chaos: By author Elin Hilderbrand @elinhilderbrand “I guess that’s why your twitter name is @queenofchaosmom. I tried to get that twitter name but it was taken.”
Helicopter Mom and Just Plane Dad: by @MarieForleo “The future is always beginning now ~Mark Strand”
Another Jennifer Blog: by @fiercedivablog “@anotherjenb here’s to blogging even when the world falls apart around us.” Jennifer has also been called the queen of bacon on Twitter and has been retweeted by @Cheese. How many people can say they’ve been retweeted by Cheese?
***GIVEAWAY AND REVIEW***
To celebrate the launch of the new community, there is a fabulousNo Mother is Perfect, But Every Mother is Unique Mother’s Day Giveaway brought to you byThe Mother of All Meltdowns…Pick up your copy today through Mother’s Day for only $0.99 on Amazon! Mother’s Day is Sunday, May 11th 2014! And we want moms everywhere to accept the meltdowns, stop chasing perfection, and embrace their uniquity. You won’t find this word listed in Webster’s, but you will find it within every mother on the planet. Enter between April 1, 2014 to May 11, 2014 to win one of three fabulous prize packages including a three night stay for two at a destination spa!
Well that post was long enough that I could have enjoyed a COUPLE of glasses of wine! The 2012 Anew Riesling has a nice fruity taste – slightly peachy – and not too sweet! Anew suggests pairing this wine with Asian dishes, smoked salmon, lobster salad, pasta with light sauces and blue cheese. Also according to Anew, 2012 was an ideal season for growing Riesling—warm through the summer and then cooling down through fall, allowing the grapes to ripen slowly and evenly. As a result the wines have a lovely purity of fruit combined with a nice balance of acidity.
During my months of blog neglect, the blog post ideas have been building. I may not be able to remember things like why I walked in the kitchen, that my sunglasses are on top of my head or that I can’t find my cell phone because I’m talking on it…but the ideas don’t seem to go away until I get them out on paper. Well, actually out on keyboard. So bear with me for a while as I get some posts published that should have been done months ago.
This post, for example, is from when I met Jill Smokler (a.k.a. Scary Mommy) in April. << Instructions at the end of the post on how to enter the giveaway for the signed copy of “Motherhood Comes Naturally (and Other Vicious Lies).” >>
After my first book signing debacle with Momastery’s Glennon Melton, I was a little anxious about going to another one. I really wanted to meet Jill Smokler though, so I did.
I arrived at the signing 15 minutes early. But – you should know by now there is always a BUT – there were some “issues.”
Problem #1: “City” parking. Everything near the building was street parking.
I live in Suburbia and drive a Suburban (stereotype pinnacle here) so parallel parking is a thing of the past for me!
I circled the block and found ONE open space. A space that looked like it was designed for one of those Little Tykes kiddie cars. For a brief (illogical) moment, I thought I could fit. I pulled up next to the spot and fortunately came to my senses before I did any damage.
I kept circling the block getting more uptight about trying to fit my huge car into one of the compact spots until – BINGO – there was a spot right in front of the building. And it was the END spot on the block so I could just pull right up. No embarrassing pull up, turn the wheel, back up, realize you are 3 feet from the curb, pull up, turn the wheel, back up, realize you are 2 feet 11 inches from the curb…
By this point, I had 3 minutes to get in the building (Jill was speaking first and then signing so I did NOT want to walk in late.)
Problem #2: The parking meter.
I rarely carry cash and even less rarely carry coins (except for the 5 pounds of pennies that always seem to be in the bottom of my purse). I would have gladly put 1,000 pennies in the meter, but no. The snotty thing would only accept nickels, dimes and quarters.
Now I had 2 minutes to get in the building.
I dumped my purse on the floor of the passenger seat. Nothing but pennies. Not even ONE nickel. I rummaged through the ashtray (again, mostly pennies) and found a few coins that I fed to the meter.
17 minutes on the meter. Not enough.
I tore everything out of the console storage and flung it onto the passenger seat. At the bottom I found 5 more pounds of pennies. Plus enough change to give me an hour on the meter.
It looked like my car had been broken into, but I had an hour. And 30 seconds to get in the building.
Problem #3: The chairs.
As soon as I sat down, I realized the chair I was in was terribly wobbly. I had visions of it collapsing on the floor as Jill began her speech. I sat motionless for a few minutes while listening to a group of ladies in front of me chatting away. While I sat alone. Sound familiar?
I finally moved over to escape the wobbly seat. The second seat was just as wobbly. I realized they must all be wobbly. No one else had crashed down, so I convinced myself that I wouldn’t either. Well, I mainly convinced myself. Kind of. Actually, not at all. I was still sure I was going down.
However, the vantage point of the new chair let me see WHO was chatting in front of me. It was JILL! I sat right behind her and didn’t even know it. She was saying Hi to some high school friends before she began.
Jill was so down to earth and honest. A heck of a wonderful lady! I even felt comfortable enough to ask something during “question and answer” time.
I was able to chat with her for a bit while she signed my books but, of course there had to be one more problem.
Problem #4: I forgot to get someone to take my photo with her!
At least I took one photo of Jill while she was speaking. But nothing else.
I decided that wasn’t acceptable. I HAD to have a photo with Jill.
So now I do.
I really can’t say enough nice things about Jill. She even commented on my blog recently. Only because I threatened to take the Scary Mommy title from her, but the fact that she took the time to comment is pretty sweet.
I recently heard that Jill is going to be the keynote speaker at a new conference in our area this October so I will get to see her again! I will make sure to get plenty of pictures!
P.S. In case you are wondering, I made it back to the car with 3 minutes to spare.
P.P.S. The unexpected perk of forgetting to get a photo with her? Since I had to cut and paste myself into the photo, my unsteady hand on the mouse completely on purposeaccidentally chopped off some of the junk in my trunk. Easiest pounds I’ve ever (virtually) dropped. If only it were that easy in real life.
THE GIVEAWAY! (Ends 8/15/13)
Ways to enter to win a signed copy of “Motherhood Comes Naturally (and Other Vicious Lies)” are:
(1) LIKE the Momopolize Facebook Page AND comment on the PINNED status. (If you already like the page, just comment so I know you want to enter.)
(2) SHARE the Momopolize Facebook Page on Facebook. You get an extra entry EVERY time you share. Just make sure to tag Momopolize (or me) in the share so I will make sure to count it for you!
If you didn’t win, don’t be blue! I will have a paperback copy of Parenting Gag Reel to give away next week and as a THANK YOU for participating in my first ever giveaway, you will be automatically entered for that giveaway also (and then I will be done with giveaway posts)! Maybe I’ll even figure out Rafflecopter by then. 😉
I will message the winners tomorrow! I will need to get an email address to send the Parenting Gag Reel prize and to know if you would like a Kindle or Nook version. Then just watch for an email from Life Well Blogged with the link for your free download!
Ever wonder where the phrase “Winner Winner Chicken Dinner” originated? According to the infinite wisdom of Askville by Amazon…
“Years ago every Las Vegas casino had a 3 piece chicken dinner with potato and veggie for $1.79. A standard bet back then was $2.00, hence when you won a bet you had enough for a chicken dinner. So now you know the rest of the story.”
Consider that tidbit my “gift” to the rest of you!
This is the story of why Glennon Melton thinks I’m bananas.
When I arrived for the Carry on Warrior book signing, the line was already winding through Books A Million.
The store was decorated with balloons and banners for the “birth” of Glennon’s book.
To complete the baby shower experience, favors were handed out
Including Twizzlers, of course.
I got in line behind the dozens and dozens of Momastery fans that were already there and within a few minutes, the line was longer behind me than it was ahead.
I was surrounded by groups of Monkees laughing and chatting. I quickly realized something awful. I was the ONLY person that had come to the signing ALONE.
I expected to see a light hanging from the ceiling flashing Loser. Loser. Loser. With an arrow pointing at ME.
No worries, I thought. “I will just pretend like I have sooo many friends I’m texting and chatting with on FB. Cell phone to the rescue! What??? 18% battery left??? Crap. If I get on Facebook, I will drain my battery before I can get a photo with Glennon.”
Panic set in.
I resorted to blankly perusing books from the shelves next to the line. After staring intently at the cover of one book for several minutes – without actually reading it, since I was in too much of a tizzy to actually focus on anything – I realized I was staring at a book called “Assassin’s Creed.”
Great, now everyone in line thinks I’m a loser AND a psychotic killer.
I suck at chit-chat, especially with strangers but I always struggle with it even with people I know. Small talk is a big stressor. I either can’t think of anything to contribute to the conversation or I babble on and on like an idiot. There doesn’t seem to be any in between with me. I’m either a faucet that won’t turn on faster than an annoying drip or one stuck on full blast, with everyone dodging the splashing water.
So I continued to stand there in silence listening to the conversations and fun going on around me, while staring blankly at more book covers (and yes, I had 3 copies of Carry On Warrior in a bag in my hand, but did it even cross my mind to use the awkward time reading? No. Not once.)
I’m surprised I didn’t leave. Between feeling like an outcast, a bit claustrophobic (I’m not normally, but this store was packed!), not eating dinner before I went and standing there in high heels, I was having visions of passing out and taking down the aisles of books with me. I’m sure you can picture what I mean…a domino of shelves knocking down one after another after another until the entire store is in shambles.
Fortunately – or unfortunately, depending on how you look at it – I COULDN’T leave because I was getting a book signed for someone who injured her knee and couldn’t stand in line. And before you say I should have loudly announced that bit of information to prove that I DO in fact have friends, I have never met her. She posted on the Momastery Facebook page asking if anyone could take her copy to the signing, and since I live in the same town I offered. (Side note: We HAVE messaged back on forth on FB since the signing and discussed meeting for lunch when she is, literally, back on her feet. She didn’t get great test result news from her injury so send her some healing thoughts please!)
Glennon made her grand entrance right on time. With all the squeals and applause, it sounded like a rock concert. She had the entire room mesmerized with her words of welcome.
And yes, she is on a ladder!
After Glennon put her feet back on the ground, she soon began signing. At least the line began inching along. But what happened next is one of those “What was I thinking???” moments. Since the crowd was so huge, index cards were handed out. Everyone was allowed 30 seconds with Glennon when they reached the coveted front of the line position, so if there was anything I wanted Glennon to hear that would take more than 30 seconds, I was instructed to write it on the card and leave it in a basket for her to read later.
I guess the anxiety of standing alone in the crowd with an empty stomach and aching feet caused temporary insanity to set in. I started scribbling away.
Here is the gist of what I filled up every inch of that card with. It began innocently enough. But then took a turn for the nutso.
“Glennon, Congrats on your much deserved success. I don’t comment much on your blog, but I adore your posts. I wish I had the opportunity to get to know you when we both lived in the same neighborhood! I think I am going to just keep writing until this card is completely full because I’m convinced I am the ONLY person here alone and I feel like an idiot standing here in silence. Everyone else is chatting happily with a group of friends and I’m just feeling totally AWK. WARD. Hopefully I won’t have a full on panic attack or anything. I’d probably pass out and hit my head on the corner of a bookshelf and get a gash in the shape of an “L” on my forehead, which would confirm what I’m sure everyone is thinking right now. Well, I guess now I will go back to randomly staring into space while everyone else is enjoying the company of their buddies. I can’t even retreat to Facebook because my phone battery is almost dead and if it dies I won’t be able to get a photo with you. Sorry for the sloppy hand writing. I wrote this while holding the index card in my hand. Palms are very bumpy. Well, I’m out of room now. K, bye!”
And I signed it. First AND last name. Yeah, I know. Sigh.
As we rounded the corner that was about the half way point, I think I must have looked pathetic enough that the group of Monkees in front of me took pity on me. They turned around and told me I looked familiar. I – completely jokingly – said “maybe you recognize me from my blog.” Unfortunately I don’t think it came off as a joke. Surprisingly, they kept talking to me anyway. I don’t think I said much else, since I already stuck my foot in my mouth once, but just the APPEARANCE that I was standing in their group made me feel included. Ahhh, I may survive this evening after all. Monkees to the rescue!
The second half of the wait was much more enjoyable because I only felt slightly anti-social, plus we were in a more open area of the store and the end of the line was at least in sight even though we still were no where near the end.
Finally, after almost 3 hours in line, I was up next. Before I continue, I must digress for a minute. I don’t normally have a get-all-giddy-over-celebrities personality. I never have. I don’t watch the Oscars nor read People magazine. No teeny-bopper posters plastered all over my room when I was young. The closest thing I had to a teen heart throb was Andy Gibb (I did have a t-shirt with his photo on it). Once a Redskin’s football player rented a house on my street, but I didn’t give it much thought (my husband on the other hand…total bromance.). Even when I met Melissa Gorga of the Real Housewives of New Jersey, I wouldn’t say I was starstruck. Don’t get me wrong, having lunch with her was an exciting and nerve-wracking experience, but I think I was more freaked out about official “press” photographers being there (I hate getting my picture taken) and trying to make small talk (or big talk) with a diva (she didn’t act like one). She even made a comment that it was the first time she had a lunch and talked about something OTHER than RHONJ (I’m still not sure if she was pleased about that or offended that I didn’t fawn over her more).
So imagine my surprise when I set my books down on the table for Glennon to sign and this squeaky, squealy, overly-excited voice appeared out of no where and spewed,
“Ohmygawd! I’m soooo excited to meet you well we may have met before our sons were in the same class in 1st grade but I don’t know if we actually met or not but I wish we had because I know we would have been great friends what? his name is Eric McKeown M C K E O W N which doesn’t look like it should be pronounced Mc Q N but it is I asked Eric if he remembered Chase and he said yes I remember seeing him at Petsmart one day when we were in class together but we never had play dates together isn’t it funny the things that kids remember but they can’t remember where they put their shoes 5 minutes ago oh and I also have lyme disease and I went to JMU but I’m sure I’m older than you so we didn’t get to meet there either but don’t we just have so much in common? I feel like we have been friends even though we haven’t and I just loooove your blog and you are such an inspiration I just hope one day I can somehow help even a fraction of the people that you have helped this copy is for Lisa that copy is for me and the third I’m going to give away on my blog what? yes I write a blog what? ohmygawd I would loooove to email you the link to my blog so you can check it out that just made my day that is so awesome thank you soooo much you are going to be here really late signing books you must be so excited that so many Monkees came out to see you but I bet you are going to be tired tomorrow and you don’t really get to rest because you have to go to you next stop on the tour what? no it hasn’t been 30 seconds I just started talking to Glennon I still have more to say why are you grabbing me by the arm sir? oh wow I get a personal escort out of the store you guys are just too sweet you really know how to make a gal feel special let’s do lunch love ya’ bye! “
I found my inner starry eyed teeny-bopper.
I think I reacted this way because Glennon is doing what I dream of doing. And doing it exceptionally well. Maybe I don’t swoon over singers or actors because I don’t want to be one. But an author, now that is something I admire. And an author that uses her talents and influence to help others. Wow. Now if only Jenny Lawson, a.k.a. the Bloggess, would bring her book tour near me, I just may be reduced to tears. I DID foster her cat’s long lost brother after all.
On my way out I said goodbye to my new friends – you know, the people in front of me in line – and we exchanged names and said we’d look for each other on the Momastery page. But come to think of it, they only gave me their FIRST names. Hmmm.
As soon as I got home, I emailed Glennon. Not once, but twice. Then I told Jim about my adventure, including the uncharacteristic gushing adoration and the index card, assuming he would laugh. Instead he got a look of horror on his face and said, “but you didn’t actually give her the index card, right?” I told him that I had indeed.
Cue the crickets.
I think I know the title of my memoir. “Carry Out Wackier.”
Click HERE to enter to win the signed copy of Carry On Warrior. I promise I didn’t add any insane gibberish anywhere on it. I only do that on index cards. And verbally. Don’t worry. If you win, you can give me a P.O. box address to mail it to. Because I’m sure NONE of you want me knowing where you live after reading this post! 😉
And in case you haven’t already heard me shouting it from the rooftops, I am in a book! It was released the same day as Carry On Warrior. My kids heard me say was that I was “going to a book signing.” The next day they excitedly asked how many people showed up. I wasn’t sure why they were so curious about the success of Glennon’s book but they ooohed and aaaahed when I told them around 500. When they asked if my hand got cramped, I realized what they thought. Talk about dejected faces when I broke it to them that I was GETTING an autograph, not giving them. Sorry to disappoint fellas.
“My” book is “Parenting Gag Reel: Hilarious Writes and Wrongs” which is the 4th book in the best selling series published by Life Well Blogged. It contains a collaboration of writing from 40 bloggers and a portion of the proceeds goes to Autism Speaks. It made it to #10 in the Kindle store’s Parenting & Families category and hopefully will go to #1 when the paperback is released (should be released within a week). Don’t be surprised if you see me sitting on the floor in a corner at Books A Million with a balloon tied to my wrist begging people to take signed copies of the paperback. Gotta’ make those kids proud somehow.
I’ve never offered a giveaway before and I’m starting out with a doozy!
Hardcover copy of Carrior On Warrior SIGNED by Momastery’s very own Glennon Melton!
5 Copies of Life Well Blogged’s book, Parenting Gag Reel, Kindle Version. A portion of the proceeds will go to Autism Speaks!
Life Well Blogged’s Kindle Fire giveaway
I was fortunate enough to go to the first book signing event for Carry On Warrior and have a signed copy to give to one lucky Monkee! I had planned to write more about the book signing (which was amazing) in this post, but will have to tell all in another post. You know, because life is hard. And today I’m not feeling up for doing hard things. So I’m doing easy things…like giving things away.
Five lucky winners will receive Kindle downloads of the 4th book in Life Well Blogged’s popular series. “Parenting Gag Reel – Hilarious Write and Wrongs” contains hilarious (i.e. the title) stories from 40 fantastic popular bloggers (well, 39 fantastic bloggers…plus me. But hopefully my stories will make you giggle as well. 😉 ). I’m very excited about the book and know you will love it too!
In honor of the Parenting Gag Reel Release, Life Well Blogged is also giving away a Kindle Fire when they reach 1000!!
I am doing an “old school” giveaway. I will write all the entries on pieces of paper, put them in a basket, and choose one for each prize! Now that is REALLY old school!
To enter the giveaway for the books (any or ALL below…the more you do, the more entries you get):
1. Facebook – Become a fan by going to www.facebook.com/Momopolize. Click “Like” AND leave a comment about one of my posts you read (other than this one). Once you click the like button, hover over it and select “Get Notifications.” (If you do this from your personal FB account AND a Blog FB page, you get TWO entries! Just make sure to comment as both.)
2. Bloglovin’ – Follow me on this blog reader by going to http://www.bloglovin.com/blog/6028789/momopolize. You can sign in using your Facebook account or sign up with your email address. Once you log in, simply click the “Follow” button for Momopolize! No comment necessary for this entry.
3. WordPress – Follow me here (at the top of this page) and comment below about one of my posts you read (other than this one).
To be eligible to win the Kindle Fire, you must also:
1. Sign up for Life Well Blogged’s email list at http://www.lifewellblogged.com/contact/. Abbey from Life Well Blogged will be randomly choosing the winner for the Kindle Fire and will notify the winner directly.
Book giveaway entries will be accepted until 11:59pm EST 4/11/13. Then watch for a new post on Friday April 12 to find out the book winners! (The winners will have until 4/19/13 to respond with contact information for me to send the prize.)
(The end date for the Kindle Fire will depend on when Life Well Blogged reaches the 1000 requirement.)
Need some giggles NOW? Go ahead and download Parenting Gag Reel today! It is only $2.99! AND the best part is that a portion of that goes to charity! What if you buy a copy and then win ANOTHER copy? You can make someone else’s day brighter by giving them the gift of laughter! Click on the link below to purchase. Paperback version of the book should be out next week!