• My Daughter Is a Girlie Girl & I Couldn't Be Happier

    posted by Aunt Becky February 17, 2013 at 7:31 PM in Toddler
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    When I found out that my daughter, was, in fact, a daughter (I believe the tech said something about a "cheeseburger" when describing my fetus, but I'm not entirely positive about that), I began to cry. Tears of joy.

    See, I'd always expected I'd be the mother of three sons, which I'd accepted as my lot in life. I love my sons like I love butter and I wouldn't trade them for anything in the world. Not even a yacht.

    But to find out that I was going to be the mother of a daughter? Me? With a daughter? I was beyond thrilled. And terrified.

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  • Ah, Maternal Guilt, You Wily Beast

    posted by Aunt Becky February 14, 2013 at 9:02 AM in Big Kid
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    I'd been prepared for the sleepless nights and the colic and the screaming and the horrifying diaper changes. What I hadn't been prepared for was the fact that I'd feel like absolute dog shit every time I didn't measure up to my impossibly high standards as "Parent of the Year."

    Parental guilt at its finest: you're damned if you do and damned if you don't.

    That, my dear friends, has only just begun.

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  • I'm About to Become a Working Mom

    posted by Aunt Becky January 31, 2013 at 3:25 PM in Big Kid
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    I've been quietly searching for jobs since July, when the "D-word" finally came out of the shadows and into the light.

    I've been freelancing for years -- I even run my own non-for-profit organization, but the "not-for-profit" part of running that organization plus the irregularity of a freelancer's schedule has made me a bit more than stressed to the gills.

    Starting over at 32 isn't easy.

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    Long after my eldest and youngest lay snuggled in their respective beds, I laid on the couch, surrounded so firmly by my blankets that I looked (and felt) like a marshmallow peep, trying to figure out if watching a documentary about female serial killers was the best option while dealing with the dreaded “D Word.”

    Before I could get too far into my decision-making, I heard the gentle pitter-patter of what I presumed were tiny boy feet shuffling down the stairs.

    “Alex?” I called into the hallway, entirely unsure if the noise I was hearing was the cats barreling through the hallway like they’d just taken a particularity awesome dump.

    pitter-patter, pitter-patter, pitter-patter

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    My daughter turns four on Monday.

    Besides the "Oh Em Gee, mah precious baybee is turning the big FOUR," things are a bit... awkward. See, my husband and I are separated, which means that he kept the house and I moved into my own apartment.

    Which is fine - I can't begin to pay the mortgage on the house either way, and living small is turning out to be a pretty interesting endeavour; one that I'm enjoying tremendously. Most of the time.

    But on Sunday, my husband has planned a party for our daughter - strictly friends and family that know her well.

    And while I should be thrilled by the chance to bake and hang out with my kids, I'm riddled with anxiety.

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  • Mommies Need a Time-Out, Too

    posted by Aunt Becky January 11, 2013 at 9:10 AM in Toddler
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    The big thing for punishing kids these days isn't a thwack to the butt. It's a "time-out," which, if you ask me, is a pretty darn cushy way to spend five minutes.

    Which is why I'm always shocked that my daughter treats time-outs like I'd sentenced her to lick the carpets clean. She'll scream and howl and moan, thrashing herself around the couch like I'm trying to murder her, as I sit there, hoping like hell our neighbors don't call the cops on me for murdering (what sounds like) a chicken.

    I don't think my kid realizes how cushy she's got it. Because if I got five minutes alone? I'd make the MOST of it.

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  • Kids With Cellphones Scare the Crap Out of Me

    posted by Aunt Becky January 10, 2013 at 9:20 AM in Big Kid
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    My family was one of the first to own a computer. We only owned one because my dad is a gadget freak, not because my parents are cutting edge -- my mother STILL doesn't understand how call waiting works.

    But I'd sit there in my footie pajamas while my dad inserted these gigantic floppy discs into the large machine so that I could do things like "learn to tell time" by reading a gigantic green clock. Not quite on the level of Angry Birds, but I digress.

    My son is 11 and a half (the half being of utmost importance), and he's asking for a cellphone, which freaks me out. I didn't have one until I was 21, and even then, the thing took up half my purse.

    Ah, how the times have changed!

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  • Note to Santa: Kids Don't Like Wooden Toys

    posted by Aunt Becky December 27, 2012 at 5:31 PM in Big Kid
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    So I'd been pretty confident about Christmas this year. I'd enlisted the help of my three-year old daughter on Black Friday so she -- the picky one -- could tell me if the presents I'd planned to buy were SO SO LAME, MOM or not. Carefully, I poured through the sites to find the best deals on the toys and ordered them. The packages began to arrive well before December 1.

    But because I'm a scientist at heart, I had to do one thing, one TINY thing to see if my parents had been right.

    They weren't.

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  • Celebrating Christmas With the Kids, Divorce-Style

    posted by Aunt Becky December 21, 2012 at 8:58 PM in Big Kid
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    When my husband and I decided to throw in the ole white towel and separate, I moved out to an apartment a stone's throw away from my former home.

    We'd made all the right choices for our kids, making sure that we'd each be seeing them as much as possible and that we'd do our best by our kids.

    That included celebrating the holidays.

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    Dear Happily Married Friends,

    You may remember me as a twosome. I was married for a long time. I had a husband. And then we decided to separate and divorce. Now I'm just Becky, on her own.

    First and foremost, let me say that I am truly glad that you're married and in love, that you're working on fixing that leaky roof and redecorating the master bath. I think that sounds like more fun than wrestling Cameron Diaz in a vat of baked beans. Honestly.

    But I'm going to have to talk to you about something I've wanted to say since my husband and I split in July.

    Divorce, unlike this flu I can't seem to shake, is not contagious.

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About This Column
Aunt Becky

What mommy doesn't need want a little vodka every once in a while? Or maybe your poison is a glass of wine or some chocolate … something (anything) to just chill out and decompress from the daily stresses of parenting. "Barely Surviving Parenthood" is something many of us feel like we do regularly — we just power through and try to laugh along the way! Well, thank goodness for Aunt Becky who will help show us how it's done … Barely!

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