Category: DC Ladies Blogging

TDCLBlogtober2014 – My Biggest Fears

When the DC Ladies prompted bloggers to write about what they were scared of, I had no shortage of options. I should preface this by saying, I know my fears are irrational and it isn’t like they keep me up at night.

As I was trying to find a quote about fear, something light and funny, I got a bunch of motivational crap like ‘feed your faith to starve your fears’ and ‘do one thing that scares you everyday’. Blah. Why can’t you just be scared of something and move on?  Perhaps I can be all whatever to those motivational sentiments because what I am scared of isn’t holding me back. So what am I scared of? Let’s get the normal parent fears out of the way first.

{Raising a Serial Killer} I think all parents worry their sweet bundle of joy will grow up to be a total sociopath. After a killing spree doesn’t the family usual tell the media outlets how sweet and funny their cold blood killer was?

{Something Bad Happening} Bad things are going to happen. I try to live in the now and realize that some bad things aren’t so horrible, like when I was laid off and got to spend more time with Mike.

{Seriously Screwing Up My Kid} Mike is 17 months and still uses a bottle for milk. Does this mean he will be swigging from a baby bottle at his high school graduation? Will he mistake my sarcasm to his dad as anger and tell his wife in 30 years that he had a screwed up home life? Will moving in January and putting him in a new daycare setting cause him so much stress he …. whatevers? I am coming to terms with the fact that he will probably be a little screwed up, but aren’t we all?

Now on to the fun, irrational fears.

{Horses} I have no basis for this, but for as long as I remember get close to a horse was a no go without getting sweaty and anxious. I have never ridden a horse or even really gotten close enough, until recently, to even touch one. This summer though I did touch a horses nose and just knowing he was looking at me made my heart race.

{Being Startled} If I watch you run down the hall and hide behind the corner and then you jump out as I walk by I will STILL scream like a little girl and bolt. Since most scary movies are based on startling viewers, I don’t watch many. I do like more psychological thrillers like The Others.

{Stopping Traffic} Good Lord I hate traffic. If you are familiar with the DC Metro Area, I live down route 66 and drive about 10 miles of it twice a day from the beltway. So many times ONE broken down car causes a massive back-up and by the time I get to the broken  down car I want to get out and kick their tires. I am terrified I will be one of those people. And then a traffic copter flies overhead and I appear on the news and suddenly become the most hated person in Fairfax County.

So there you have it! Nothing a little therapy can’t cure, right? What are your fears?


TDCLBlogtober14 – What Does Halloween Look Like?

Is it strange that I am not a fan of Halloween? It’s not that I don’t LIKE it, I just don’t give it much thought. Growing up we always dressed up and went trick or treating, but we didn’t make a huge deal out of it. Maybe that will change when Mike gets a little older, but for now it is not a big to-do. So when The DC Ladies wanted to know what Halloween look like, I was a little stumped.  As I write this, I still am. I think Halloween looks like dressing up and being someone or something else for a few hours.

Here’s some of the ghosts of Halloween past.


TDCLBlogtober14– 10 Things I Couldn’t Live Without

Today’s DC Ladies prompt is about the 10 things I can’t live without. I could easily tick off Diet Coke, Blissoma Stress Relief Serum (how have they not made me a brand ambassador yet?) and my knock-off Toms, but this blog leans more towards parenting (I can’t bring myself to call it a ‘mommy blog’ yet), so how about ‘10 Things I Couldn’t Have Lived Without for the Past 16 Months‘? It’s a long title, but it is what it is. And I probably have mentioned a few of these before in my Registry Must Haves post, but they are SO worth mentioning again.



{Teething Necklace} The concept of a teething necklace is amazing. Especially if you ‘wear’ your kid regularly. It kept Mike busy chewing while I working and I didn’t have to worry about him ruining my ‘good jewelry’ (harhar) or swallowing a bead. I am a big fan of Chunky Potatoes because they are really well made and pretty enough to wear around without looking like a frazzled Mom with tacky jewelry.

{Pinch Guards} Mike’s favorite thing to do right now is open and close doors and open them again. We are moving in a few month and didn’t want to buy a ton of childproof door locks and in some cases (like his bedroom door) we didn’t mind if he went in and out as he pleases. But we worry about his little fingers. Enter pinch guards. A stupid simple, cheap solution. They are foam, slip on the edge of the door and keep it from closing. Plus they are easy on and off.

{Burts Bees Multipurpose Ointment} Have you seen the Frank’s Red Hot commercial where the old lady says she ‘puts that shit on everything’? Well when it comes to BBMO I put that shit on everything. Diaper rash, dry skin, dry lips, everything. Even if you don’t have kids, buy this – I even slather it on me! It’s like petroleum jelly without the petroleum (apparently that’s bad) and the icky smell and feel. That tub lasts freaking forever too.

{Summer Infant Video Monitor} This is a case where S. was right. I poo-pooed a video monitor since we lived in a small apartment, but it has been such a blessing. We can see when Mike is mumbling in his sleep, if his diaper leaked and even listen to him when he is playing alone in his room. It was worth the investment AND the Summer Infant model we got is on the low end and has worked perfectly.

{Baby K’Tan} If you follow me on Facebook or Instagram you know I love me some baby wearing. I don’t do it as often anymore since I am not working from home with a baby, but I recommend it to everyone I know. While Moby is a popular brand (I haven’t tried it, so I don’t have an opinion), I recommend the Baby K’Tan. It is 2 pieces and really easy to put on, stick the kid in and take off solo. There isn’t a lot of room for error. Also, I am a plus sized momma (size 18/20) and the XL fits me perfect.

{Wubba Nubba} Oh Wubba Nubba. While other kids were starting to wean from their pacifier, Mike was discovering his. I might be in denial, but Mike doesn’t seem too addicted, we can easily take it away from him, but for now he loves it. I am not about to defend my 16 month old and his Wubba. They are hard to lose too!

{Ergo} Before Mike made an appearance I found an Ergo on Craigslist dirt cheap and now that he is getting bigger and heavier, it’s our carrier of choice. It is easy to maneuver solo and Mike is comfortable in it. It’s worth the price point because it can be used for so long. Also, the Ergo company is amazing – they do a lot of social good and have a lot of resources for their products.

{Fisher Price iPad Protector} Shall we debate how much ‘screen time’ kids should have? No? Good. Mike has a normal amount of screen time on the iPad playing lots of fun games, but money doesn’t grow on trees. Every time he presses on the screen I hold my breath. Thankfully Fisher Price heard our gasps and created an iPad protector. Now, I need to say, it is a flawed product – you need a coin to open it, you can’t manage the volume or the home button (hint – flip the iPad around in the case). However, it’s the best thing on the market. You can drop it, push on it and yes, drool on it without incident.

{Homedics Sound Spa} Have I talked to you about Sleep Sense by Dana Olbeman? If not, you are lucky. I really want to invite her to Thanksgiving dinner. That woman is a saint. A SAINT! I digress. So Sleep Sense mentions getting a noise machine to help with sleep and Homedics has a great one. It has a variety of sounds and a timer. The best feature is it is PERFECT for travel. It can run on batteries and slide right into the diaper bag.

{Medicine Bottle} It’s amazing how the smallest thing makes the biggest difference. Mike wasn’t a fan of any liquid medicine and we tried everything. It was like wrestling an alligator. We stumbled upon a medicine bottle and ta-da! We fill it, put a few drops of formula and he is none the wiser. Granted, he has gotten much better with medicine in a dropper, but I am not tossing our medicine bottle supply any time soon. And at $2.50 get a couple.

What did I miss? Anything you couldn’t live without?

TDCLBlogtober14 – Organizing Blog Tip

Happy Monday! I would be more excited about autumn, but apparently the DC Metro area will be reaching 80 degrees tomorrow. No wonder everyone in my house is sniffling, sneezing and coughing.

So the DC Ladies wanna know … what’s my best tip to help me with organizing my blog. This one is pretty easy because I LOVE anything to do with organizing and productivity. I am sure some of the bigger blogs have editorial calendars and such, but not this gal. I try to keep up with once a week and when the mood strikes. So my favorite way to organize things is with Gmail.

I always have some type of technology within reach so I jot my blog ideas, sentence fragments and ‘things to remember’ in a draft email. So when I am feeling the urge to write, I just pull from my draft email folder and put my notes into prose.


TDCLBlogtober14 – When I Grow Up

I always envied people I meet now who say ‘I always knew I wanted to be a ….’. But then again, I don’t – what if they were so ‘sure’ they closed themselves off from considering other career paths? That is too deep to discuss on a Friday morning. But the DC Ladies Blogtober prompt really has me reflecting on my ‘career’ path. What did I want to be when I grew up? A couple things actually.

{Trash Truck} I don’t really remember this, but my momma does. When I was young, perhaps preschool age, I really wanted to be a on the trash truck crew. Not the driver, but the guy hanging off the back. And no. It wasn’t because I liked to get dirty, it was probably because it seemed cool to not have to wear a seat belt and hang off a moving vehicle.



{Fashion Designer} My fashionista dreams might been around middle school which I find hilarious because I remember living in huge wide leg jeans, a tshirt and flannel (hayyyyy 1994!). Even now my sense of fashion is lacking. But I remember flipping through an issue of Seventeen or Sassy and seeing ads for fashion design schools. I was also considering Wake Forest because my babysitter went there and she was cool. I tried to find a picture of me in middle school, but thankfully none were posted on Facebook.

{Political Something} Yep. Something. I went to Marymount University with the idea I would declare political science as my major. After half a semester that brief love affair was over. I ended up getting a degree in Communications and Event Management. As my Poly Sci friends used to say ‘oh you have a test today? Do you have to practice putting the round peg in the round hole?’ Harhar.

National Youth Leadership Conference, 1999
National Youth Leadership Conference, 1999

And yet now, I am ‘leaning out’ for a bit while I have a youngin’ at home. I’m okay with that most days and like my job. I guess I am still trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up.

TDCLBlogtober14 – Favorite Fall Memory

Some of the DC Ladies Blogtober prompts have been hard, but today’s prompt is SUPER easy. My favorite fall memory!  I have a few …

{Leaf Towns} I was really really lucky to have a rather big yard growing up and friends in the neighborhood. I remember when the leaves would fall and instead of raking them up immediately, my Dad would take the lawnmower and drive around creating a ‘road’ for our bikes. My best friend Katie, her little sister Jessie and my brother David would spend hours ‘driving’ to various ‘shops’ and ‘houses’. It was so much fun to imagine being a grown up driving and making decisions.

Not really a picture of our leaf town, but you get the idea.
Not really a picture of our leaf town, but you get the idea.

{Camping} I am sure I will blog about my family’s adventures in our pop-up camper when I was growing up, but for now just know I loved fall camping. The weather was nicer, sleeping was cozier and since we always went somewhere with trees, it was prettier.

Skyline Drive, Virginia 1997
Skyline Drive, Virginia 1997

{Married} Of course I had a fall wedding! I sweat ya’ll. I don’t need sweaty spring or summer photos commemorating my wedding day.

Getting murried, September 25, 2010
Getting murried, September 25, 2010

{The Two Week Wait} One of my favorite memories of all time was finding out I was pregnant with Mike. It was also during S’s and my momma’s birthday (the same day!) so we spent those two weeks celebrating and not trying to think about what might (or might not) be happening to my body. PS – I was pregnant!

There’s a baby in my belly! Pumpkin picking at Great Country Farms, 2012


TDCLBlogtober14 – Current Obsessions

The DC Ladies want to know about my fall obsessions, but really all my fall obsessions are just, well, obsessions. I mean, yeah. I like pumpkin lattes, falling leaves and sweaters, but what else is new? How about we just talk about my 10 current obsessions.


{Podcasts} I’ve always talked about my craptastic commute and my undying love of podcasts. I work for a great company, but my office is SILENT. We are the satellite office and the technology department, so the AC and keyboard taps are all you hear. My podcasts, specifically the Mike O’Meara Show, Dear Mattie and Truth and Iliza keep me company. What are your favorites?

{Infused Water} Drinking water is about as much fun as being water boarded. I finally dove into some Pinterest boards and made a few mason jars of infused waters. Wow! I am loving having a big ole quart of water with pretty peaches and kiwis floating about. I am for sure drinking more water these days AND wearing a path in the carpet between my desk and the bathroom.

{Atkins Candies} Did I mention we are back on the Atkins low carb living train? We fell off and then said train backed over us. Me specifically. It’s still the first week and I am not sure how much I’ve lost, but I’ve FELT better and that’s what matters. Sugar is my vice and the Atkins Candies really fill that void. It’s a pretty sizable bag and they taste JUST like ‘real’ M&Ms!

{Boogie Wipes} Who said Boogie Wipes are for babies? I have a huge pack at my desk, a travel size in my car, another huge pack at home and I use them constantly. They are soft saline wipes for runny, sore noses. Grape scented of course.

{Lane Bryant Tanks} I seem to wear a cami every day and I LOVE Lane Bryant’s Smooth Stretch Cami. I’ve been really disappointed lately with LB’s offerings AND price point, but these are worth every penny.

{Watching Mike Play Alone} I am going to blog on this later, but I love watching Mike play alone. After a day at daycare with his friends he seems to really need some time alone and S. is great about giving him that (since he does pickup and has about an hour before I get home). There is something really cool to see how his imagination works and what he THINKS he should be doing with toys. It’s hard not to correct him on ‘how to play’ (who knew?) but it is vital to his independence and creativity.

{Jane the Virgin} Have you seen the CW’s new show Jane the Virgin? It’s so cute and has a great storyline. Even S. likes it!

{Stylus Pens} Now that I am using my iPad at work I picked up a few stylus pens from the Dollar Tree. The price was right and turns out I actually LOVE these pens! They write nicely and are convenient.

{Method Bodywash} I love Method brand and even though their body wash is a little more than I would spend I deserve something that smells awesome. Right now I am lathering up with the Kelly Moss scent. I am pretty sure you can only get it at Target.

{Essie Sleek Sticks} If you follow me on Instagram, you will know that I scored big at the Dollar Tree (do you see a trend?) a few weeks ago and found some Essie Sleek Sticks nail stickers. These retail about $10 at beauty stores so I stocked up. I am not usually a fan of the nail stickers but these are really nice and easy peasy.

TDCLBlogtober14 – Best Blogging Tools

I’ve been blogging for a couple years now, which might just be a record for me! I am sure my parent’s attic is filled with half full diaries because I would be gung-ho and lose interest. That’s exactly why I started with a free WordPress blog, then after proving I was going to keep up with it buying a domain and moving to self hosted.

As I’ve mentioned a billion times before, I write for me. This takes off so much pressure to be grammatically correct, guarded and, well, perfect. But I do try hard so I utilize a few tools to build my blog and have fun.

blog tools

{Wordpress} I started using WordPress because it was free and I knew a lot of people who could troubleshoot with me if I had questions. Luckily WP has a TON of resources from user forums, videos and guides for all levels of techies.

{Feedly} I get a lot of great ideas for blog topics from other bloggers. I organize them all in Feedly so I can flip through during lunch or before bed. It’s simple to organize and add or remove blogs.

{PicMonkey} This might be my ultimate favorite because I am such a visual person. I use the paid version of PicMonkey, but the free version has a TON of great tools for editing pictures, creating a collage or even designing just about anything! I used it for Mike’s first birthday invites and every collage for my blog.

{Networking} I live in the land of ‘who do you know’. Sometimes it’s helpful, but other times it’s exhausting, however it does pay off! My giveaways have been from successful networking and the outpouring for the diaper drive came from networking as well. Bloggers helping bloggers, companies trying to spread the word, friends who know someone who can troubleshoot. Don’t hide behind your screen bloggers!

TDCLBlogtober14 – The Best Advice Given to Me

Happy Friday! I’ve really enjoyed the DC Ladies Blogtober so far. It’s shown me that I do have time to blog more often and the prompts have gotten me thinking. Today’s prompt was especially difficult – what was the best advice someone gave me.

Everything I thought of was generic and seemed contrite. Never give up! Always wash your face! Wear sunscreen! But then I was flipping through Pinterest and realized the best advice I was given (and seldom take) was given to me by my Momma.

every color


Shopping is hard for a curvy gal like me with short legs. Crops become long pants, jeans need to be hemmed, shirts should hit my hips, blazers make me look like a linebacker … the list goes on. I am ALL about dressing for the body I have, not the body I want (and for that you are welcome). So obviously when it comes to finding something that works great, I need to buy it in every.single.color. And that day. It’s amazing how often I’ve hit a department store, found a gem, went back the next weekend only to find them sold out, discontinued or only in a size 10X or shmedium.

We all know by now – Momma’s always right!

#TDCLBlogtober14 – It’s in the Bag

I have so many purses, tote bags, big ones, small ones, new ones, old ones – yet I only use about 4 on a regular basis. I have three in rotation now depending on the situation. A Vera Bradley crossbody for when I am solo, a Thirty One Cindy Tote for when I am out with the kid and a Dakine Anya bag for work. I keep them all stocked with the necessities and just move my wallet. I did a blog post awhile back about what’s in my diaper bag a la US Weekly style, so I was excited when DC Ladies asked bloggers what is in their bag.




1. Dakine Anya Tote: This bag rocks. It is made by an active outdoor company, so it is really durable and the print is ‘calm’ enough for a professional. I also like the multi-strap option – I can do a cross-body messenger style, or use the shoulder straps.

2. Great Bites Mints: These are my mints of choice because of the fun packaging. Plus one will kill bad breath for hours. You’ve been warned!

3. Erin Condren Life Planner: I am in love with this massive life planner. I can’t go to work without it even if I don’t have to check it daily. It’s pricey, but worth it for what I need. Stay tuned for a review in a few weeks!

4. Blissoma Stress Relief Serum: Remember HeadOn? I was obsessed with that stuff as a chronic headache sufferer. When I got pregnant and couldn’t take Advil Migraine we discovered HeadOn was discontinued. S. did some research and ordered me some of this magic. It zaps my headaches, smells amazing and is organic. It goes everywhere with me.

5. Wooden Teether: Last Christmas we got Mike a wooden teething ring with his name on it, because why the heck not. I can honestly say he never used it, but it goes with me in my bags. I am not sure why, but it is comforting to have something of his with me during the day.

6. Emerald Cinnamon Almonds: We are back on the low-carb eating train so almonds are a necessity. I pretty much have them stashed everywhere and LOVE the cinnamon variety. It gives me a sweet taste while keeping me on track.

So, what’s in your bag?