For hire: professional chauffeur

» 21 July 2014 » In Kids » 2 Comments

For hire: Professional chauffeur (uniform will consist of shorts, black tank and flip-flops)
Rate: Free, but accepts hand-drawn pictures with inventive spelling captions and rainbow loom bracelets
Vehicle: Slightly dented, scratched-up SUV (bonus ground-up organic Cheerios on floor)

If interested, please contact Snarky Mommy. But you’ll have to call her cell phone, because she can’t check email while she’s driving. She also can’t actually take your call, because that’s also illegal in the city of Chicago and she doesn’t have a bluetooth speaker because the one she already had sounded like she was in a tunnel and the earpieces make people look like d-bags.

Seriously, I am an idiot. I signed the kids up for this amazing summer camp that was half the price of everything other summer camp. They swim! They play sports! They come home dirty and tired and smiling! It’s great. But it’s halfway across the city in rush hour, so I now spend 50 minutes in the car roundtrip each morning and again each afternoon. So two hours of my day is spend wanting to shoot myself in traffic, praying that the Waze app doesn’t malfunction.

That also means I spend at least 25 minutes each afternoon listening to all three kids fight over who gets to use the iPad on the way home. Because God forbid they should play with the iTouches each of them own. Last week I actually stopped in the middle of a street, put my flashers on and told them I was prepared to sit there until they stopped screaming and worked out a way to share it. As they had friends coming over when we got home, that was a surprisingly effective form of parenting.

Lucky for me, the current camp ends next week. Unlucky for me, I start chauffeuring them to a new camp in a different location in August. But you know what, it’s still better than having them all home screaming and fighting each day, so I’ll just be filling the gas tank every two days with a smile on my face.

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Review “YES MOMMY” for a chance to win an Elsa dress

» 07 July 2014 » In Book » No Comments

A few weeks ago, I came upon the Holy Grail of young girl parenting: two identical Disney Elsa dresses hanging in the Target toy section, along with an Anna dress. I didn’t think twice, I grabbed them all and sprinted to the check-out, leaving the other stunned customers in my wake.

Of course, Emmie was thrilled beyond belief with her good fortune when I presented the dress to her and Maeve was over the moon with her Anna version. But I had an extra Elsa dress burning a hole in my closet. So I’ve decided to offer it up in a giveaway for you, my amazing readers.

What’s the catch? All you have to do it leave an Amazon review for my new book, Yes Mommy: The Mayhem and Madness of Not Saying No. That’s it. Then you’re entered to win a chance at the most-coveted item for the under-7 set.

Use the link below to enter and follow the easy steps. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Butter me up

» 18 June 2014 » In Random » 5 Comments

We’ve become professionals when it comes to traveling with the kids. We have separate toys that stay in separate backpacks for travel, I can pack with my eyes closed two hours before a flight and I can run the gauntlet of an unfamiliar Whole Foods in 10 minutes flat while grabbing every essential item we need for snacks and meals.

But this trip threw me for a bit of a loop. We just had the kids empty their school backpacks and throw some stuff in there instead of digging out the travel backpacks. That meant we didn’t have any crayons or PlayDoh for the plane. Ugh. I also tried packing for our overnight trip to the lake and our longer California trip at the same time. Which meant Emmie ended up with no pajamas at all for the longer trip. Awesome. And then when we arrived, I was exhausted (see: waking at 4 a.m. for 6 a.m. flight with three kids) and not thinking clearly when I made my Whole Foods run.

While I managed to remember a bunch of snacks, 27 pounds of organic produce, 2 gallons of milk and a box of mac and cheese, I couldn’t remember that I needed butter to make said mac and cheese. And of course, I didn’t realize this until I was back at the hotel looking at the box of mac and cheese and thinking about making it.

After a good night’s sleep (that ended at 4:50 a.m. when the kids woke up, you know, still on their little Central Time body clock schedules), I figured out I could just grab some butter packets from the hotel breakfast spread. Genius!

Corralling three kids at a breakfast buffet requires more than two hands, so unfortunately, I didn’t have a free hand to carry the butter. But I had pockets! So I put them in my pocket and used my free hand to wrestle a forbidden piece of candy snuck from the front desk away from my 8-year-old.

As we got in the car a short time later, I both heard and felt an odd crunch coming from my pocket. That’s weird, I thought to myself, but continued on with my drive. A few minutes passed before I had a sinking feeling about that odd crunch. I was now entering the freeway when I gingerly maneuvered my hand under the seatbelt and into my pocket to discover that yes, one of the butter packets broke as I sat down. My pocket was now filled with butter. And as it had spent some time in my pocket, it was melty and viscous. Perfect for making cookies, not so perfect for the wearability of my shorts.

I unbuckled my seatbelt so I could more easily pull the offending packets out of my pocket, which set off cries of “Mommy! Put your seatbelt back on!” from the peanut gallery. I grabbed a rogue piece of Kleenex, but was unable to contort my body in the necessary fashion and keep the vehicle on the road, so I gave up and let the gooey substance saturate my shorts.

I guess the bright side is that if I need a piece of bread buttered, I can just rub it in my pocket for a minute and it will come out perfectly coated.

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