Dear Frederick, I Requested a Trader Joe’s

Dear Frederick

I generally pride myself in being an upstanding citizen. I recycle, support my local small businesses, and am always willing to jump in and lend a helping hand. Sure, I may neglect to bring my trashcan around back from time to time… but in general, I’m a pretty fabulous and respectful citizen… until you piss me off.

When my husband and I bought our home, I checked out the schools, I took a look at the surrounding businesses… I liked what I saw. About a year after moving in, the grocery store at the bottom of our hill closed. For years, it sat unoccupied. I continuously asked for a Trader Joe’s. I mean… all I wanted was a cute little grocery store.

Well, you know what I got? A trashy furniture outlet with all the reject furniture (seriously… camouflage couches and orange recliners… this isn’t freaking Duck Dynasty… this is Frederick) the other stores can’t sell… and it’s all still SERIOUSLY overpriced (over $1,500 for a freaking camo sofa). Then, they are tossing a Dollar General next door. WTF?!?!?!

DID I NOT SPEND YEARS POLITELY ASKING FOR A TRADER JOE’S? WHY DO YOU HATE ME? Yes, despite the thousands of homeowners in our area… I’m taking this as a personal attack. So, the other night (completely out of retaliation) I did the only sensible thing. I took my toddler to the furniture store 30 minutes before they closed… and let him go crazy!

He climbed on couches, jumped on ottomans, checked out the bunk beds, and darted up and down the aisles. Sure… there wasn’t anyone in the store to disturb… and the sales associates really didn’t mind at all… and he wasn’t destructive or anything… but this was my form of quiet revenge.

I know I’m not the only one who is disappointed in the new businesses coming into our shopping center. As my mom pointed out, perhaps the hooligan teenagers will stop loitering in front of my house and go get a job down the hill… but I don’t really care. It’s not about that. Right now, it’s about me creating an imaginary war between Frederick (even though I know they had absolutely nothing to do with this… but I need someone to point a finger at) and myself.

I know this might seem ridiculous… but I need a little pretend drama in my life. NOW… who wants to have a play date at the furniture store?!?!


Side note: Munchie was exhausted when we left and slept like a champ… so this might not just be a one time event.

Three Reasons Mommy Won’t Let You Eat Those

Chocolate Meltdown

This morning, I exited the  bathroom and was attacked by a screaming Munchie, running through the house at super speed, wielding Reese’s Pumpkins in each hand.

His tiny voice was yelling, “MOOOOOM! MOOOOOOOOOOOOOMA! MOOOOOOMMY,” as he frantically waved chocolate and peanut butter goodness in the air, just begging me to unwrap the treats.

Well, my little sir… I’m sorry to inform you… no matter how intense your meltdown is … there are THREE reasons you won’t be consuming these Reese’s Pumpkins. (And no, it has nothing to do with a peanut allergy.)

1.  Um… it isn’t even 7am. Where in the world do you think you are? Gram’s house? I’m sure she would delightfully feed you chocolate at such an hour? Or perhaps you have mistaken me for Grandpa… who I know sneaks you candy and sweets at all hours of the day? (Pretty sure Bubby would back me up and scramble you an egg.) Now, what kind of Mom would I be if I let you eat this crap for breakfast? I mean, cake? Yes, cake is a valid breakfast food. But, Reese’s Pumpkins? No… simply not happening.

2. Those aren’t yours. That’s right… not everything in this house belongs to you! You are welcome to 95% of the consumables in this house… but Mommy has to draw the line somewhere… and I draw the line at wine, coffee, and Reese’s Pumpkins (you can have the Reese’s cups… but get off my Pumpkins). Do you not understand that these are a RARE, limited time treat that only comes around ONCE a year? Mommy has a very limited number of vices in her life… and these are one of them.

3. You wouldn’t even appreciate them. Remember that time I shared my ice cream with you… and you showed a total lack of disregard for my precious chocolate sprinkles? Well… it’s kind of like that… but times infinity. I know you would just shove the chocolate covered, peanut buttery goodness in your face and gulp it down without taking a moment to truly appreciate the artistic balance of flavor. So, unless your eyes are going to roll back in your head as the flavors melt together and dance on your palette… then you just need to move on and accept that Mommy isn’t sharing.

Go ahead… call me a b*tch. I don’t care. You can’t have these Reese’s Pumpkins.. but now that it’s after 7:30am… I guess it would be alright if I gave you a candy corn.

Halloween is a Little Sweeter… The Second Time Around


As I sit here, indulging in (a few bites of) the candy I have siphoned out of Munchie’s pumpkin pail of loot from last night’s Trick-or-Treating adventures (okay, fine… it’s been more than a couple bites… but it was cold, so I upped the candy tax for this year), I can’t help but reminisce about the brisk fall nights when I, myself, walked up to the homes of my neighbors and took candy from the hands of strangers (talk about a creepy freaking holiday).

Actually, I’ve been thinking about holidays in general. The whole excitement and shrill joy that surrounds these festivities seems to be cyclical throughout our lives. I’m going to discuss Halloween, but you will quickly see how the premise relates to other stuff, too.

Halloween was awesome when we were kids because… well… do I even have to explain? Filling your pillowcases with candy, coming home to sort through the goodies, trading back and forth with friends/siblings/neighbors/etc (which was ridiculous, because it all went in the same basket in the end… except for the chocolate… that went straight in the freezer). Yeah, Halloween as a kid was epic.

Then, you got older… too old to go door to door… and the holiday kind of lost its flair for a while.You would watch kids pass by, maybe you would even hand out candy… being sure to pass out the gross stuff (I’m talking about YOU, Bit O Honey) first and save the Snickers bars and Reese’s cup for the end… hoping they would become your bounty, if not claimed by younger children throughout the evening.

I guess things picked up for some folks in college… slutty costumes, alcohol (but, obviously only for those of legal age), and parties. A different kind of nonsense and fun. Then, you buy a house… or become a somewhat responsible adult… and start paying back society for the many years you collected candy of your own. That’s right… you carve a pumpkin, flip on your porch light, and pass out treats to the neighborhood kids.

But… it still seems like something is missing.

Then… your family starts to grow. Pregnant Halloween is awesome… because of maternity pants. You can eat all the candy you want and no one will say a word… especially if you add in a cute line like, “The baby just LOVES Butterfingers!”

That takes us to “Floppy Baby Halloween,” when your kid is too small to give a crap, but looks freaking ADORABLE in that giant costume you have shoved them into. (Kid-haters, beware… we WILL post a million photos of our children throughout the year… and then double that amount on holidays… especially this holiday… because our kids are the most adorable things you have ever seen… EVER.) You find every excuse to parade your “too young for candy tot” around, simply to show them off.

Finally, we have the year Halloween (and every other holiday) starts to get fun… the no-longer-floppy-baby-I-can-do-this-myself-get-out-of-my-way-and-let-me-eat-all-the-candy Halloween. That’s what we have THIS year! Munchie was running up and down driveways to collect his loot, really checking out everyone’s jack-o-lanterns, decorations, and dogs… yes, you read that correctly… dogs. If the house had a dog, he would rather look at, pet, and sit with the animal than eat candy. (He also really enjoyed all the fire pits people had pulled around front and were huddled around. I’m not kidding – it was COLD!)

After posting our pictures from last nights’ adventures, I started getting messages from my friends with children who are now grown, telling me to enjoy these years, because I will miss them. Yes, I’m sure I will. I know there will be a lull between the years my kiddo is enthralled in the holidays, and the day the next generation steps in to create a new wave of excitement for our family… but until then, I vow to live in the moment… and take the time to sit on the ground with him as he admires the jack-o-lanterns.

Sometimes My Kid is a Jerk

Sometimes My Kid is a Jerk

Where do I even begin? The other night, we headed to Mall-o-Ween… a safe trick or treating option in our town (which we learned you better show up on time for… because nearly everyone ran out of candy about an hour before we got there… and despite the event not ending until 9, most vendors were packed up and gone before 7pm… which was disappointing, but lesson learned… doesn’t matter… Munchie still had fun running around the mall).

So, our little Hulk is running around, chasing mascots (which included a dragon from the laser tag place, and a guy in an inflatable ice cream cone at Dairy Queen), and having a great time. All of the sudden, out of no where, this adorable little girl dressed up as Tinkerbell sees “Hulk” and gets SUPER excited. As she takes off toward him, her mom tells us that she is a HUGE Hulk fan. Tink’s mom is armed with her camera (thank goodness) and snaps a handful of pictures of our adorable kids.

I grab one of my (super fancy) Momma Bish cards out of my bag (I completely recommend that every mom carries a card of some sort… if for no other reason than to exchange photos… but you also never know when you will meet a super awesome friend), hand it to her, and request a copy of the pictures.

I know from experience that there is only about a 37% (a super accurate statistic that I just made up… but feel is pretty legit) chance that someone will actually contact me (because most moms are looking to connect and help each other out… which is far different from my experience distributing my contact information in the professional world, but I digress). So, yesterday, I sit down with my cup of coffee and check my email.. hoping to see some pictures… but trying not getting my hopes up.

After being too glazed over to enter my password correctly on the first try, my email loads… and what… what is this? An email with pictures attached! YAY! I was so excited to review the adorable meet and greet between my little Hulk and Tinkerbell. I open the attached photos, my heart gets giddy… the little green fairy goes in for a hug from my little giant, her sweet little words “Hulk Hug,” echoing in my mind… and then I see it… and I am MORTIFIED!

What I thought was an adorable exchange of hugs and welcoming new friends with open arms (which was apparently only occurring in my fairytale imagination) was in reality my kid (who I’m hoping was just REALLY into his role as Hulk) DEFLECTING this precious little girl’s hug. What a jerk! I love my kid… but come on dude, really?

In sixteen years, if my son is pouting on the couch because he is lacking a date for homecoming/prom/Friday/Saturday night… I’m going to pull out this gem of a photo and remind him that maybe THIS is why he is single. (And then I will hand him an aloe plant to cover that BURN!)


Please note: I did contact Tinkerbell’s momma and request permission to post this story. Also, I’m 93% sure my own mother is going to call me and tell me not to call my kid a jerk. Sorry Mom, I can’t answer my phone. I’m (conveniently) out of minutes. I will correct myself by saying he isn’t a jerk… he just acts like one on occasion.


Adventures At The Patch – No Babies. No Barf. No Bandaids. Success!

Pumpkin Patch

Last year, I delivered a super sentimental post about our adorable first trip to the pumpkin patch. Everyone was like… awww. Well, I am happy to report that this year’s trip, while tons of fun and with plenty of adorable, picture perfect moments, was equally filled with hysterical memories.

We invited a whole pile of family and friends to join us… and just about filled an entire hayride with people we knew. (Completely recommend doing this! Everything is more fun in groups! Plus, our families LOVE meeting all of Munchie’s little friends and I know my mom likes meeting my other mommy friends… aka my future drinking buddies… if they ever stop being pregnant all the time. Seriously, when are we going to sit on the couch eating bon-bons and drinking wine all day while our children color on the walls?)

Oh, that brings us to the first pumpkin patch memory. Vegan Mommy almost had a baby in the middle of the pumpkin patch (crazy hippie)! Her doctor was all like, “you are officially on bed rest,” which she translated to mean… “just take a chair and sit in the middle of the field.” Fortunately, I am trained in emergency childbirth (random, fun, and slightly terrifying fact) and could totally handle that situation.

Among the many things I can’t handle, though? Well, apparently we can add hayrides to the list. WTF?!?! Who can’t ride on a freaking wagon being pulled by a tractor? Too incompetent to be lazy? Come on new, Momma Bish! After taking about three pictures of Daddy and Munchie (who were sitting across from me) I started to get a very familiar woozy feeling. I looked at my mom, who was sitting at the back of the wagon, with incredibly wide eyes and said, “MOVE OVER, NOW!”

Thinking I wanted to sit by my family, she scooted further toward the edge of the wagon. “No! The other way!” Confused she followed my direction. All I could think was… awesome… I invited all these people we know to watch me blow chunks off the back of a hayride. I couldn’t let that happen. How freaking embarrassing would that be?!?!  My only option was to jump. I started reaching for the chain that was acting as a door.

My mom grabbed my arm, “Emily Marie! What are you doing?!?!”
“Mom, I have to jump.”
“Emily, you can’t jump off this thing. It’s moving. You will get hurt.”
“Mom, I don’t care… I have to do it.”
She tried to appeal to my logical, business mind. “Emily, it’s a liability for the farm, you can’t do that.”
“Mom, I’m not going to sue anyone… I just need to get off of this damn thing.”
Then she tried to appeal to my mothering/role model persona, “But all these kids are going to see you and they will think they can jump off, too.”
Damn… that was a good point. “Mom, just stop talking.”

I needed to focus. I closed my eyes, took long deep breaths, and counted to ten. Finally, the “Ride of Doom” came to a stop. I dismounted from the wagon like a ninja gymnast (pretty sure there were some aerial flips and such taking place). It literally took everything in my to NOT kiss the ground.

We stomped around to find some pumpkins, which was a hysterical event in and of itself. Kids were face-planting all over the field, as their little feet got tangled up in the pumpkin vines. (Pick up your feet, guys!) This year, we were a bit more excited in playing in the dirt and using the pumpkins as drums than actually finding a quality carving companion… but I’m sure that is a skill learned in time.

Best part of Vegan Mommy being perched in a chair? We had a great place to stack our pumpkins! After collecting our festive squash and a few delightful gourds (and taking a billion pictures), we made our way back to the barn (some via the rolling doom wagon… and others by foot… aka just me and a toddler who I’m pretty sure just has a fabulous soul and didn’t want me to look like a weirdo walking alone…). The kids played around in the corn tables for a bit, we paid for our fancy fall decor, loaded up the cars, and headed home.

No babies were birthed. No chunks were blown. No wipeouts needed so much as a bandaid. I would deem this trip a success. Next year, we will do it all again… but Momma Bish will be walking… because she is a giant wimp.


Big thanks to Brookfield Pumpkins for always being so gosh darn amazing! Please note, this is NOT a sponsored post… I just really really love this place and the people who own it.

The Caffeinated Laptop Disaster/Miracle

The Caffeinated Laptop

Nothing says “Happy Freaking Monday” quite like a toddler dumping your (much-needed) cup of coffee directly into your laptop keyboard. I was literally sitting at the table… typing away… when Munchie ran over, quickly grabbed my coffee, and dumped it all over the computer. (Excuse me… since when can he reach that high?)

I reacted with lightening speed, unplugging the device, flipping it upside down, and grabbing gobs of paper towels to blot up the mess. Yes, I know he’s a toddler… and yes, I know accidents happen… but what I don’t understand is how something so crazy could have happened while I was sitting RIGHT THERE!?!? (He’s quick!)

I didn’t yell at him, though I did stick him in his room while I cleaned up the mess. This is when having a husband who is a techie really comes in handy. I started popping keys off my laptop keyboard to dry off all the nooks and crannies. About halfway through the keyboard, Daddy Bish walks through the door.

Confident my superhero of a husband will be able to restore my computer to working condition, I had him take a look. “I think your motherboard is fried.” An internal panic attack started to ensue… “and you probably shouldn’t have popped all these keys off… most of the time you can’t get laptop keys back on.” Well… crap.

After a night of drying… and lots of praying to God that he would have mercy on my motherboard (because you have to be specific in your prayers)… I put the battery back in. HUZZAH! Motherboard NOT fried! My keyboard, on the other hand (which I did manage to reassemble) had a few keys that didn’t want to respond. Solution? USB keyboard. (My laptop and I have been through a lot together… wedding planning, several jobs, baby announcements… googling what fruit/vegetable Munchie was looking like in my belly… blogging… we have an intimate history.)

This afternoon, I fire up the laptop… and through what I can only explain as a technical miracle… EVERY key on this thing WORKS! (I did have to pop the space bar off and reconnect it… but that’s it!)

After moping around for a week about having a broken computer, I can move into the weekend with a fully functioning device. (Several people have pointed out that I’ve been a bit “off my game” this week… and now you know why.) While I would like to tell you that I have learned my lesson… I’m still sitting here, blogging, with a cup of coffee in front of me… but Gabba is on… so I think I’m safe… for now.


Dear Otterbox,

My laptop is WAY more valuable than my phone. Trying to make me a kid-proof case for this thing?

Momma Bish

I Have ONE Child… and That’s OKAY.

Only Child

Many couples will nod in agreement… from the moment you say, “I do,” everyone starts pestering you about when you are going to have a baby. Perhaps you don’t want kids at all, maybe you want to wait, you might be like us – with a plan to start trying right away, or maybe you already have a kid(s) (or one on the way). Ultimately, the decision about how, when, and if you will ever have children isn’t up to friends and family… it’s your call (though most potential future grandmas beg to differ).

Then, if you DO decide to have a child (which is an incredible process)… you better have the socially acceptable number of children (two… one boy and one girl… in that order) or you will never hear the end of it.

In America, we have this “family of four” standard… which, given the divorce rate in our country, is kind of ironic. In fact, I almost feel like getting divorced has become less taboo than straying from the “two child” lifestyle. (Oh, our great-grandparents would be shaking their fingers at us!) You have one kid? When is the next one coming? You have more than two? Sorry to hear that… don’t you know how to use birth control… your life must be impossible!

Get over it people! My family planning is NONE of your business (but my whole life is on the internet, so I’m going to publicly rant about it anyway)! I have ONE child. He isn’t being raised like the stereotypical “only child” you have a negative connotation of… he is being raised as a socially well-adjusted member of society.

Are we planning to have more? Well, we were… but due to my current medical situation we have accepted that Munchie might very well be our only child… for the long-term. This isn’t necessarily something that has been easy to accept, but it’s the hand we have been dealt. If you haven’t ever been in a situation where your fertility was called into question… or confronted with life threatening risks to you or your child, you can’t really comprehend the size of the blade someone feels when you ask, “When are you having a(nother) baby?”

I feel like our society is starting to become more sensitive toward families with fertility issues… but don’t forget… just because someone has ONE child… doesn’t mean they are able (or want) to have more. You don’t know the stories of the people around you… and you don’t need to… but now you know mine… and what I’m dealing with… and since I have now publicly ranted about it… I think I have permission to start smacking people in the face when they ask me if/when we are going to try for number two.

Just sayin…

Playing Games… and Testing Boundaries


Coming from a family of sarcastic tricksters, we weren’t shocked when Munchie started psyching us out (though I do admit, I wasn’t expecting this from him at such a young age).  From the time he was just a few months old, we started practicing the phrase, “not in the mouth,” which I must admit is perhaps the most helpful thing (aside from walking) that he has probably learned so far.

We recently brought back play dough, after a pretty lengthy hiatus (eh hem… Mommy was being lazy). Munchie knows he isn’t allowed to put the stuff in his mouth… but like most toddlers, needs to be reminded of the rule every once in a while. No big deal… but apparently my “not in the mouth” command and accompanying facial expressions are hysterical enough to demand an encore… because he started putting the dough up to his mouth (wide open), freezing in place, and giggling!

He’s like, “Hey Mom, look what I’m doing! Are you going to stop me? Or are you going to let me eat this (non-homemade… because you were being lazy… probably made in China from the toxic chemicals and the souls of small children)?”

Taunting us with his antics has become quite the game around here. From pretending to eat play dough, to testing the limits on how many times he can knock his milk over before we declare, “all gone,” we are most definitely in a stage of exploring boundaries.

It kills me… because I know he is totally aware of the rules… and I know he is trying to see what he can get away with… but at the same time, he is being so goofy about it! Sure, before I have my coffee in the morning, the antics are less than adorable… but once Mommy has the energy to fully engage… this kid goes from being a crazy mischievous, boundary pushing maniac… to a hysterical little jokester, just trying to get a rise out of us.

My only regret is not having an unlimited amount of energy to always be 100% engaged and tolerant of his shenanigans… because deep down, he really down know what the boundaries are… and he’s just trying to play. (Well… most of the time… sometimes, I’m pretty sure he’s trying to give me a heart attack so he can climb on the table and eat all my disgusting… but oh, so addictive, candy corn, before anyone is able to alert a medical professional.)

Macaroni Art is NOT For Breakfast

noodle art

Very little surprises me anymore. Since I stepped foot on the crazy train, I have learned to expect the unexpected. But… it does seem like just when you think you have seen it all… your kid finds some new and crazy way to try and shock you. Like…seriously… I’m pretty sure Munchie sits awake in his crib at night, just plotting his shenanigans for the next day.

This morning, I’m trying to down a cup of coffee (in a last-ditch effort to wipe the zombie-fied look off my face) and filling out forms for Munchie’s first dental appointment. I glance up and he is sitting across the (super messy) table from me. Too tired to process the extent of the situation, I go back to filling in all sorts of numbers and details… which… again, given my state of exhaustion, are taking every ounce of brain power to remember.

Then, I hear a crunch. WTF was that? I only gave him a bottle and a banana! What was he crunching? Crap.

I look up just in time to catch him in the act. He has located the macaroni pumpkin Sweet Cheeks made this week and is proceeding to pick off the bright orange noodles and EAT THEM!

“Hey! We don’t eat macaroni art for breakfast!”

He looked at me and I could see his little eyes twitching, as if they were trying to figure out how to make an exaggerated rolling motion… and he hopped down off the chair.

While I’m not shocked that Munchie attempted to eat macaroni art for breakfast, I am always slightly amused by some of the phrases that come out of my mouth.

Calling All Baby Bumps (and Former Bump Club Members)

Due Date Baby

Hey MD/DC Metro Mommas – Looking for something awesome to do this weekend? Join me on Sunday, October 12th for Due Date, All Things Baby, at Port Discovery in Baltimore! I’m attending as one of their VIP Mommy Bloggers (whoop whoop… because I’m so famous and stuff) and I really really hope to see some of your fabulous faces there!

Don’t even get me started on how much I LOVE Port Discovery… and what a genius place to have an event for new and expecting mommies! If you have kids, I suggest bringing them (and Dad… or some sort of responsible party) and going two separate directions at the door. Mommy can head one way for a fabulous afternoon of exhibits and seminars… and the rest of the family can go crazy at my favorite children’s museum ever! (Seriously… if you haven’t been there, google it and just go ahead and buy your tickets… because you are going to fall in love.)

So, what is Due Date? Omigosh… I’m so happy you asked! Ever been to one of those crazy bridal expos that are filled with bridezillas, mauling each other for a bite-size sample of chocolate cake? Well… it’s like that… only take away the psycho brides who want to kill each other… and add tons of amazing new and expectant mommies (and some daddies, too) who are looking to gain or share information with one another… AND a ton of fabulous exhibitors… AND GIVEAWAYS (4 Moms Breeze Playard, massive gift baskets of MAM and Lansinoh products, an Ingenuity InTrust 35 Pro Infant Carseat, Medela Pump In Style Advanced with On-the-go Tote, family admission to Ripley’s Believe It or Not in Baltimore, and more)!

I’m super excited to check out all of the awesome vendor exhibits, see what new products are available on the market, and get some sweet tips on how I might be able to hone my parenting skills (if not for this child, then surely to pass along to other mommies). Event presenters will lead workshops such as Breastfeeding 101 (presented by Lansinoh… who I would totally trust for advice on this), Car Seat Safety, and Sleep Talk Therapy (which I haven’t ever heard of… but sounds amazing)!

So, what are you waiting for? Hop on over to their website, check it out, buy your tickets… and I’ll see you there!

I’m always up for meeting new mommy friends and I can’t wait to get to Due Date tomorrow!

(Hmm… perhaps we could sneak away afterward for a glass of wine with our new mommy friends… and the new mommies to be can indulge in some sort of fabulous dessert.)

OH – AND… I get to bring a super fabulous guest with me… so the competition is on… who wants a free ticket and HOW are you willing to earn said ticket? Ready… set… GO!!!

The Twists, turns, and true tales of a mom and her pint sized human

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