Jenny Isenman


I’m a humor columnist, on-air lifestyle expert, Host of The Jenny Isenman Show on Cafe Mom, and a proud mama of two. I’m also a cellulite/wrinkle obsessed, pop-culture junkie and card carrying Gen Xer (oh, they have cards). I’m known as Jenny from the Blog at my site The Suburban Jungle. I guarantee that reading it will make you tanner, smarter, and reduces cellulite. Well, at the very least, it’ll make you more literate. 

Sipping on:

Venti Non-Fat Latte ... oh, and an Iced Green Tea (to negate the bad effects of the coffee)

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    25 Simple Ways to Annoy Your Tween

    posted by Jenny Isenman February 21 at 3:49 PM in Big Kid
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    When your child hits tweenhood, everything becomes bothersome, especially you. All the injustices of the world are highlighted with eye-rolls, grunts, and blank stares. 

    I'm taking advantage of this time by being extra annoying. For instance, when I'm sitting in the garage waiting for J, my 12-year-old son, to exit the house, I watch the door intently. As soon as he cracks it open, I beep. J startles, without fail, and glares at me as if I've done something unforgivable, like smashed his Beats or released all the remaining Axe body spray from the can.

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    Remember when you and your valentine were all sexy and romantic? V-day generated excitement and anticipation. It took planning and forethought.

    I remember not passing gas for like, the entire first year to keep the love alive. I think I spent the last 6 months of that year permanently hunched over in pain. What, you didn’t think I was gonna go there? Oh, but I did.

    Before we had kids, my husband would send flowers and take me to incredible restaurants. You know, those fancy ones that require reservations to be made more than 7 minutes in advance?

    After having kids, I've received the BEST handmade cards ever and heard the sweetest sweet nothings from my adorable little imps, but marriage wise, romantic holidays have lost something that I can’t quite put my finger on. Oh right, ROMANCE.

    Yes, V-Day has changed, which is why I made a marriage edition of candy sweethearts, and this: a comparative look at how it was before kids vs. after... 

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    I've had some awkward V-Day Moments, from my daughter, then 5 years old, trying to soap opera kiss me to my husband trying to stuff himself and champagne into our undersized NYC bathtub in our undersized NYC apartment to my Ry telling me I make her want to "puke of love."

    That said, I've decided this year will not be awkward. No, we will all be realistic in our planning and our phrasing.

    I picked up a pack of those V-Day Sweetheart candies. You know, those chalky conversation hearts that are supposed to represent the sweet nothings you would whisper in your lover's ear (like, I LOVE U, B MINE, KISS ME ...). And I thought, This is anything but realistic phrasing.

    Which is why I give you this list: Phrases that should be etched on those cute little hearts, after a few years of marriage ...

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    I recently read a fabulous article by Sherrie Campbell called "8 Guaranteed Ways to Emotionally F*ck Up Your Kids." Now, to be honest, I originally clicked on the article because I imagined it to be some mocking list filled with humorous fare, like, "When they're taking a bath, scream 'Shark' and run out of the room." Though the actual piece was a lot more astute, I'm pretty sure that would be totally scarring as well.

    In fact, one moment of creatively messing with your kiddos (for your own amusement) could potentially last a lifetime (see Jimmy Kimmel). So when I finished the piece, I still wanted to read the sarcastic version. Who was gonna write that?

    Since I've already written lists about the lies we tell our kids to stay sane and the Momisms we trick them with, I thought, why not me?

    That said, here it is: 13 Guaranteed Ways to F*ck Up Your Kids (WARNING: DO NOT TRY THESE AT HOME, IF YOU WANT YOUR CHILDREN TO TAKE CARE OF YOU WHEN YOU'RE OLD) ...

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    Growing up, my mom constantly warned me to be careful or I'd crack my head open.Yes, I learned, that nearly everything could end with me accidentally being maimed or killed. "Don't go too high on the swings, you'll fall and crack your head open." "Be careful playing on that icy sidewalk, you don't wanna slip and break your neck." "Stop leaning back in your chair, you'll..." "Don't run by the pool… Don't hang upside down from the monkey bars…"Though few, if any, of those things ever happened, I'm pretty sure the fear of these catastrophes scarred me for life. Which is why I swore not to sound so fatalistic with my own kids.


    Oh sorry, that was me laughing because, well, the best laid plans ... and all.Now that my kids have a bit of independence, I've realized I rely on scare tactics and maybe some exaggeration to get many a point across. So, here's just a few things I've caught myself saying that will most likely send them to therapy later in life.

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