Traveling with Kids

Let’s start this post off by coming right out and saying it.  Traveling with kids is a fucking nightmare.  Those little things require so much crap, and they suck at carrying things.  They also suck at walking quickly, and walking long distances.  This means I have to carry them, their crap, AND my crap.

Mommy needs a drink after thinking about it.

First you need sippy cups, snacks, backup snacks in case the suddenly decide they don’t like their favorite food, pacifiers, quiet toys that are big enough to find on the floor with the 3″ of additional legroom but not so big you can’t fit a variety of options in their carry on, aspirin for yourself and for them, and more snacks that you can shove at them to keep them happy on a 3 hour flight.

Then is getting on the flight itself. We fly with a car seat because it is safer and better for baby containment. You may or may not have noticed, but those things are hard to install under normal conditions… Add a line of people that are pissed off at you for bringing young children on a plane and it gets even funner.

By funner I mean it makes me want to stab myself in the eye.

Remember back in the day when they used to allow people who needed extra time to board the plane first?  Yeah, not anymore… and get prepared for nasty comments from the gate agents if you try.  We have to wait until group 3…. with what seems like 85% of the rest of the plane.

Now that that part is out of the way… Let’s talk about the other thing that sucks? Watching every person who gets on the plane realize they are on a plane with small kids.  You can almost see their thoughts… “Sigh… I have to get on this plane but I’m going to read/nap… aww, cute kid!  Wait… kid… kid on plane.  Mother fucker.”

Yep.  We parents, we can see you.  And for the most part we wish they weren’t here either.  You can’t logic a kid.  You can’t convince a kid that they do need to stay still and quiet for however long the flight is.  Best you can do is pray that all of the things you packed will keep them entertained enough to stay happy but not so entertained that they get excited.  Squeals of happiness are still loud and obnoxious noises to your neighbors.

I’ll make a deal with you though…. I’ll try my damndest to keep my kids well behaved, you try not to make that job any harder for me.

  • Reclining seats are somewhat controversial, but here is something to think about… My kid’s feet cannot reach your seat if you leave it upright.  If you recline it not only can my child’s feet reach your seat, they don’t really have anywhere else to go.  If you are going to recline your seat in front of a child you might get kicked and bumped the entire flight and I can only do so much about it.
  • I know you were looking forward to that giant bag of candy whatever… can you please maybe try not to eat it in front of my three year old who would like to think random strangers are OK with sharing.  I wish my family could have sat on one row just as much as you do…. talk to the airline about only having middle and window seats available.
  • Please remember that these seats are only 20″ apart.  I can hear you talking shit about having a headache because my kid cried for less than 30 seconds during takeoff and that I need to “make that thing happy.”  I might be bitchy and vindictive and probably won’t try so hard the next time she starts kicking the crap out of your seat and throwing cheerios in your general direction.  Just saying.

 

 photo credit: “Paper Planes” by pristyles licensed under CC BY 4.0

Green Smoothies – Late

With last week’s vacation and this week being a normal week with kids and jobs and stuff I’m running a little late on my challenge.

OK…. so I was already late… and now I’m a little more late.  Whatever, we are still working on it.

I’ll have a real post for you tomorrow, and my week 3 smoothie post on Monday.

OK… what I meant by Monday was Tuesday… I’m not so good at this scheduling thing.

Back from Vacation

This past week I was on vacation. It was pretty amazing, and pretty isolated.  That really isn’t a bad thing… Isolated is sometimes a very, very good thing for me.  I’m all introverted and stuff.

For our vacation my family went somewhere cold, somewhere without cell coverage, and somewhere with spotty (at best) internet.  We barely turned on the TV, and when we did it certainly wasn’t the news.  I had no idea if ebola had been cured, the stock market collapsed, or if the zombie apocalypse had happened.

It was pretty awesome.

If I were being honest with myself, I would probably say I’m a technology addict.  (No honesty here though… Nope, nope, nope.)  I love having a wealth of information at my fingertips.  I love being able to find some bit of information with a few clicks on a keyboard or taps on my smartphone.  I pink puffy heart data….

Curiosity killed the cat... but the satisfaction brought it back.

Curiosity killed the cat… but the satisfaction brought it back.

Sometimes we need a bit of a break, because information overload is a real thing.  Having so much information at your fingertips is overwhelming and exhausting.  After a week away I’m coming back feeling a bit more refreshed, a bit less frazzled, and ready to slowly slip into the world of information.

photo credit: “Desconectada” by Cati Mayol and “Ambition Killed the Cat” by Jo Carter licensed under CC BY 4.0

Green Smoothies – Week 2

Another week down in my adventure with green smoothies… I tried some awesome new recipes thanks to the ladies over at Simple Green Smoothies and have learned some things.

  1. It is still something really easy to do and is not time consuming.  It is also something that it is really easy not to do.  Habits are hard to make and hard to change.
  2. My kids love most of the recipes they have tried and they make an awesome bribe.  Mommy win.
  3. Read the recipe ahead of time and see if there are any tips.  Sometimes there are steps that take longer than the 5 minutes that I have allocated myself in the morning to make these things.
  4. I am actually feeling a lot better and I might be losing weight.  Either that or I’m not super bloated.  I’ll take it either way.
  5. Many green smoothies are not green.  Most are kind of brown-ish.  Others are VERY green.

Since we started late we were able to just go ahead and start the second week over the weekend rather than repeating our favorite recipes.  We might have also skipped a day and drank some of the leftovers that started to accumulate in the fridge.  Again… whatever.  We are making it work.

Want to know something that doesn’t work?  Raw carrots in a smoothie.  Yeah… two recipes this week called for carrots… they were really, um, chewy?  I don’t know how you would describe it.  The taste was good, but the texture just wasn’t.  I’m thinking that if we had cooked them to soften them up prior to blending it might have helped.

I find that I would rather drink a few small glasses during the day than one big glass, and I am loving these little jars.  They are the perfect 8 oz half serving so I can grab one in the morning and one in the evening.  If you want to drink one big glass that is fine, too.


This week seemed to have a semi-tropic theme…. it worked.  If you didn’t try any last week, I highly suggest a few from this week.

  • STRAWBERRY CARROT PINEAPPLE – The flavor of this was was really good.  The texture not so much.  The carrots and pineapples (to a lesser extent) made this a smoothie you had to chew.  If you try this one, cook the carrot first.
  • HAWAIIAN BREEZE – This one was really yummy.  Definitely tropical.  It did need a little extra blending because many of the fruits involved are very fiber-y.
  • SHAUNA’S CARROT CAKE – Carrots… I want to like it, and I might try it again… but the carrots.
  • ORANGE JEWLS – Like orange juice?  This one is just like drinking orange juice with a little banana thrown in for fun.  Everybody knows that bananas are the life of the party.
  • CREAM MACHINE – Drinking avocado?  What?  That is crazy talk.  Well… it isn’t.  Do it.  Gives everything a wonderfully creamy texture. This has probably been our favorite smoothie so far.

For Part 1 of this adventure, please check out my post here.

**Affiliate links – If you click on a product link it may be an affiliate link. I use these links to offset my cost for making this blog awesome.

photo credit: “Green Smoothie” by latisha (herbmother) licensed under CC BY 4.0

Green Smoothies – Week 1

A handful of times of year Simple Green Smoothies has a 30 day challenge in which you are supposed to drink green smoothies every day for a month and see what happens.   They give you a grocery list and 5 recipes (you repeat your favorites on the weekends), and get to blending.  Each recipe makes at least enough for two, and most mornings we get two 16 oz servings plus a little bit for my kids to share.

Supposedly this challenge was going to start on October 1… we might be a little late to the party.  Whatever, we are doing it.

So let’s start at the top….

What IS a Green Smoothie?  Simply put a Green Smoothie is some combination of Fruit, Liquid, and Leafy Greens.  Things like Spinach, and Kale, and Romaine but also things like Mango, Strawberry, Banana, and Raspberries.   They have a pretty simple formula to follow

2 Cups Leafy Greens + 2 Cups Base Liquid + 3 Cups Fruit = Green Smoothie for 2

Does it actually taste good?  To be perfectly honest not all of them this week have been hits.  Some of them have been really yummy, and none of them have been terrible.  They don’t taste like straight up raw spinach, in fact most of them tasted like fruit.  The ones that I didn’t love were not terrible… they just weren’t my thing.

If you like this you will like green smoothies.

If you like this you will like green smoothies.

30 Days?  Really?  Yes, 30 whole days.  I promise it isn’t that bad.  Now that I’m a little over a week in, I’m more confident that this could be a permanent change in our household.  Lots of vitamins in one easy to make and tasty package?  Sure, why the hell not.

How hard is it?  I promise that if you have a decent blender this isn’t difficult at all.  They suggest some pretty high dollar blenders (Their favorites are a Blendtec and a Vitamix) and
I don’t know about you but I don’t see any reason to spend that much money on a blender.  Sorry.  They might be the most amazing blenders ever, but they are still blenders and I pretty much use my blender to… uh… make these smoothies once a day.  Yeah… my $60 blender works just fine (I actually really like my blender… watch the prices on Amazon and you can find a pretty sweet sale).

  1. Put the Leafy Greens and Base Liquid in the blender.
  2. Blend.
  3. Put everything else in the blender.
  4. Blend.
  5. Pour into glass(es) and drink or refrigerate.
  6. Wash blender.

The most difficult part is washing the damn blender.


So here is a quick review of the recipes from week one

  • CHERRY ON TOP – This was a really good introduction to green smoothies.  Tasted fruity, but think using a base other than water would have made it even better.  This was a favorite.
  • B-LIMEY STRAWBERRY – This had a LOT of lime and it was a little too tart for me.  After a few sips you got over the lime overload and it was really good.  I still ended up adding a bit of sugar to take the edge off though.  I’ll make this again with half of a lime.
  • ALMOND PEACH BLUEBERRY – Not a big fan of this one.  In fairness we used Walnut Butter rather than Almond Butter, but I don’t know if I would have liked that any better.  It was a little pasty in texture and using the ‘right’ nut butter probably wouldn’t have helped.
  • KALE ‘N CHERRY – I really enjoyed this one.  Cherries + Chocolate = Winner.
  • U-PICK ME UP – Normally I’m not a tea person and I was hesitant to try this because it uses green tea as the liquid base.   It was pretty awesome though.  This is not one you can make while getting ready to work unless you prepare the tea the night before as it needs to cool.  Learning moment.

**Affiliate links – If you click on a product link it may be an affiliate link. I use these links to offset my cost for making this blog awesome.

photo credit: “Super Hydrating Green Smoothie” by Stacy Spensley and “Fruitscape” by sea turtle licensed under CC BY 4.0

They Like Me!

As a new blogger I was thrilled the first time someone clicked on my blog.  Getting my first comment was amazing.  My first follower blew my mind.  Finding out that more than one person has nominated me for a social blogging award… total warm fuzzies.

So for those of you who nominated me, THANK YOU!  Thank you for reading what I have to say.  Thank you for following me.  Thank you for sharing my page.  Thank you for nominating me.

  1. First up is Laura from Jet Set Brunette, she nominated me for a “One Lovely Blog Award.”  I’ve poked my head over to her blog a handful of times and I’m looking forward to hearing about lots of fun adventures (and more pics of the fur babies).
  2. Next is Anna from Apparently Anna.  She also nominated me for a “One Lovely Blog Award.”  She blogs about a little of everything, which is just the way I like it.
  3. Jessica at Send Sunshine nominated me for a “Liebster Award.”  To be honest I hadn’t really stopped by her blog before the nomination, but I’m looking forward to checking it out.  Jessica is an author, and her blog is comprised motivational quotes and positive thoughts.  We all need more or those some days.
  4. Finally there is Jen at Staying Mom.  She is an expat living down in Australia, and while I’ve popped over once or twice I’m really looking forward to getting to know her.
  5. While writing this post I was nominated by Berryduchess at (you guessed it) Berryduchess.  This is another quirky and fun blog I’ve only just begun to discover.  I’m a follower, and you should check her out as well.
One Lovely Blog

Want to see my response? Click the image above.

The One Lovely Blog Award nominations are chosen by fellow bloggers for those newer or up-and-coming bloggers. The goal is to help give recognition and to also help the new blogger reach more viewers. It also recognizes blogs that are considered to be “lovely” by the fellow-blogger who chose them. This award acknowledges bloggers who share their story or thoughts in a beautiful manner to connect with their viewers and followers. In order to “accept” the award the nominated blogger must follow several guidelines.

  • Thank the person who nominated you for the award.
  • Add the One Lovely Blog Award logo to your post and/or blog.
  • Share 7 facts/or things about yourself.
  • Nominate 15 bloggers you admire and inform nominees by commenting on their blog.
Liebster Award

Want to see my response? Click the image above.

The Liebster Award nominations are pretty similar to the One Lovely Blog nominations.  We give his reward to fellow new-ish bloggers (with less than 200 followers) to help them reach more viewers.  In order to “accept” this reward the nominated blogger must follow the guidelines below.

  • Thank the person who nominated you for the award and link back to their blog.
  • Add the Leibster Award logo to your post and/or blog.
  • Share 11 random facts about yourself.
  • Nominate 11 bloggers who you feel deserve this award (and have less than 200 followers).
  • Answer 11 questions posted by the presenter and ask your nominees 11 questions.

I’ve started my responses but there is still more work to be done.  If you want to see what I have written, please click on the images above.  

photo credit: “Trophies” by Brad.K licensed under CC BY 4.0

Always Read Labels

Because we were all running super late getting home from work and forgot to plan for dinner last night, the hubby and I decided it would be a good idea to go out to eat.  What is the healthiest kid friendly option around?  I have no clue, we decided to go eat wings.

So dinner is going great, my husband and I get our wings, the girls get their nuggets and sauce (Honey BBQ yummy) and I start cutting up nuggets for the baby.  While this is going on my eldest drops her nugget in her BBQ.  Normally, my husband and I are not OK with her drowning her food in whatever sauce she is using, but we realize she is three and accidents happen.  My husband helps her fish the piece out with a fork and she takes a giant bite.

This is why it is so important to read labels… that Sweet BBQ sauce my child just took a giant fork full of… yeah not Sweet BBQ.  It was Habanero BBQ Sauce.  Said so right on the container.

Needless to say she freaked the fuck out.

For those of you who aren’t aware of habanero…. it isn’t an instantaneous spice reaction.  It builds in time.  Slowly growing until your mouth feels like the surface of the sun and all the liquids inside you try to escape from you skin, nose, and eyes.

Yeah… that was fun.

While this is going on my youngest is happily munching on her chicken.  Until she spies the container of seasoning that was placed in the danger zone.  If you have kids you know what this “Danger Zone” is if you don’t… it is the area that is within arm’s reach of your child, including an extra six inches in case by some voodoo magic that only babies in toddlers contain they are able to contort their body in a way to make their arms extra long.  I don’t know how it works, but being short that would be a super handy skill.

I look over with just enough time to watch her grab a handful of super salty vinegar seasoning and put it in her mouth.

Now I have two kids freaking the fuck out.

My husband and I look at each other between consoling our children and helping them to guzzle water and milk.  We laugh.  What else can you do really?


In case anyone was wondering we did notify the restaurant of their mistake and they were extremely apologetic and went above and beyond with making amends.  We were understandably upset by this honest mistake, but realize it was an honest mistake.  Our children have no lasting damage.  Probably.

photo credit: “Sauces” by Angelina Earley, “Be My Sweet Honey Love” by Purple Sherbet Photography, and “Hot” by Josh licensed under CC BY 4.0