February, 2011 | Teeny Manolo - Part 2



Archive for February, 2011


To Co-Sleep, Perchance to Dream…

Tuesday, February 15th, 2011
By Glinda

We swore we weren’t going to do it with this one.

Little did we know.

When our son was born, he refused to sleep alone.  After many heartbreaking attempts to get him to do so, my husband and I finally gave up.  I’ve always leaned toward attachment parenting, and we just went with it. We had two bedrooms, and one of us at a time co-slept with our son until he was about two and a half years old.

Now, it wasn’t horrible.  The Munchkin was and is still a very sound sleeper and everyone got plenty of sleep during that phase.  Since we “weaned” him off the co-sleeping, he has had absolutely zero sleep issues. He goes to be without a fuss every night and wakes up refreshed in the morning.  No nightmares, no crawling into bed at 2AM, no sleep-walking, nothing.

But, everyone always clucks at you when you let it slip that you co-slept. And yes, usually people don’t own up to the fact simply because it’s easier just not to have to explain to people that no, you are not trying to destroy your kid.  Despite the fact that we were sincerely doing what we thought best for our family, everyone is always out to second-guess you.

When my daughter was born, it all started wonderfully.  She slept alone in her co-sleeper bassinet, (which I highly recommend, by the way) and in her swing. 

She then transitioned pretty well into the crib, although there were some rough nights here and there.  But nothing out of the ordinary.

However, between the sixth and ninth months of her life, she got quite ill from whatever her brother brought home from school, and simply refused to sleep alone.  We tried, we really did.  But she was sick three times in a three-month period, and everyone was absolutely miserable and getting little rest.  Everybody knows that much poor decision making comes from lack of sleep, and we were no different.

So one night we said, let’s just try bringing her in the bed and see what happens.

Worked like a charm.  She’s a bit of a restless sleeper, but if she wakes up she will usually go right back to sleep.  Unless of course it is teething pain, and then all bets are off. She is able to sleep by herself during naps, although she requires someone to fall asleep with her. 

So instead of starting out co-sleeping and then transitioning to the crib, we sort of did it backwards.  Goodness knows, not by design. Would I prefer that she sleep on her own in a crib? Yes.   But sometimes things just work out a certain way, and that’s what happened with us.

And really?  I’ve pretty much stopped caring about what other people think about the co-sleeping situation.  We have made the bed perfectly safe, and she is well past the age of being smothered by blankets or pillows.  She gets her rest, I get my much-needed beauty sleep, and we are all happy.  There is nothing wrong with this picture except for the people who want to get all hot and bothered about things that aren’t really their business. 

We co-slept with our son and he didn’t turn out to be some co-dependent wussy who can’t fall asleep on his own.  Quite the contrary. 

So, if you are thinking about co-sleeping, do what works best for you, and all the rest can shut up and do what’s best for them.


Monday Teeny Poll

Monday, February 14th, 2011
By Glinda

image via

Oh readers of Teeny Manolo, you are ladies after my own heart. Not one of you chose veggies with dip as your favorite appetizer, and that is why I love you so. As for the winner of the poll, there was a three way tie! Mini-sized regular food, chips and cold dip, and something with cheese all had 19% of the vote. The next-highest category was nachos, with only 12%. If push came to shove, I think I would have to vote for an appetizer containing cheese as my favorite. You just can’t go wrong with cheese, you know?

Now, I would be totally remiss if today’s poll had nothing to do with Valentine’s Day. It’s there, it’s a gimme, so I’m going for it.


Celebrity Dad Faceoff 2.0

Friday, February 11th, 2011
By Glinda

Orlando Bloom, trailing for most of the week, managed to pull out ahead of Craig Ferguson for the win.  Almost, Craig, almost!

Today’s challenger is someone I first became familiar with on Grey’s Anatomy, where he had a very dramatic character arc.  I think he’ll always be Denny to me.

VERSUS


I’m Calling it Bracelet-Gate

Thursday, February 10th, 2011
By Glinda

Now maybe I’m just being an ungrateful, disgruntled parent.

But I don’t think so.

You see, I just sent an email to the Principal of my son’s school.  And it while it wasn’t rude or snarky, it was blunt and possibly something she isn’t going to like reading.  Scratch that, I can promise you that she isn’t going to like reading it.

Sigh. Let’s see if I can explain this.

I was invited to the end-of-semester award ceremony because the Munchkin was slated for an award. 

Of course I attended, but I was surprised to see the inclusion of a group of students who got what amounts to a “Student of the Month” award, although this school calls it something different.   I was confused as to why it was included with the academic awards because they had already gotten their awards prior to the ceremony. Anyhoo, the award is given for a sort of good citizenship type of behavior.  I’m totally down with that, good citizenship should be recognized.

But let me ask you this-

Is it fair that the good citizenship winners get a pizza party? And time out of class to be personally congratulated by the principal and have their names hung on a personalized certificate on the Principal’s office wall for the year? And that they got a rubber bracelet? (Yes, I’m aware that it’s just a rubber bracelet, but picture a bunch of kids on a stage being instructed to show the audience consisting mainly of their fellow classmates their special bracelets.) 

Now pretend that you are seven years old. 

I’m sure that you would be more than a bit envious of these rewards given for good citizenship.  Because if nothing else, seven year olds are all about pizza parties and time out of class, and yes, rubber bracelets.  They don’t care if things are technically kind of lame, they just WANT them.

Let’s move on to the academic awards. 

For being being the best and brightest in their class for academic excellence, which takes quite a bit of work, by the way, they got a piece of paper.

It didn’t even include the subject of excellence, nor the semester. It was actually an extremely generic award given to the school for free from the company that takes the school photos. I know this because their name is on the bottom of it.  It basically just says “award” and I am purposely putting that word in lower case because it’s all in lower case on the paper.

Why is there not a bit more equity between the Student of the Month winners and the academic achievers?  I personally don’t think that one is necessarily more important than the other, so why the discrepancy in rewards?

If you were a seven year old, would you rather get the award with the pizza party, eaten at lunch in front of the rest of the school, or the piece of paper?

It is a sad day when your kid tells you that they were disappointed because they “only” got the award for academic achievement.

So all of this was said in the email, albeit more briefly.

I am so NOT the Principal’s favorite person.


“Me Time” Clinically Proven to Prevent Mommy Meltdowns

Wednesday, February 9th, 2011
By Glinda

I’m a SAHM with a very part-time job that consists of writing this and that other blog.

This means I spend a lot of time with my children.

Which means at the end of the day, I can definitely see why the evening glass (or on certain days, bottle) of wine begins to look mighty attractive.

The problem is, I don’t really drink.

So, short of having my own rubber-padded room in which to retreat, I rely on getting away from my sometimes annoying darling children to maintain my sanity.

I cannot stress the importance of taking time for yourself to my fellow mothers.

When my son was born, I saw any time I spent away from him as a betrayal of my motherly duties.  That I would choose to not be with him was an insult to him, and just a sign of my deficiency as a mother.  Puh-leeze, former me, you are taking yourself waaay too seriously. 

Now that my daughter is here, I’ve thrown all that nonsense to the wind.   The kids are not going to melt because you left them with your husband.  In fact, it’s probably a good thing that Dad has some alone time, since Mommy tends to dominate their social schedule. Having two children is definitely harder than one, I just never knew how much more mentally draining it could be.  Add the fact that my Energizer-bunny daughter is in a rebellious toddler phase, and most of the time I can’t get out of here fast enough.

So if you can get some time, any time, away from your kids, do it.  Don’t second guess yourself, and don’t feel guilty.  I don’t care if it’s just a quick trip to Target, (which I don’t consider a chore the same way I do a trip to the grocery store), coffee with a friend, or a walk around the neighborhood.

GET THEE OUT!

I don’t care if you have to bribe your husband, or hire a sitter, or whatever.

You will feel happier and refreshed and it’s true that it will make you a better parent. It’s healthier for every relationship to have some time away from each other, and the parent-child one is no exception.

I promise.


The Other “S” Word

Tuesday, February 8th, 2011
By Glinda

I found out today that using the adjective “stupid” in any context will get you in trouble at the public school my son attends.

Doesn’t matter if you call yourself stupid or if you are struggling with a backpack zipper that won’t open.  If you utter the “s-word” (the one with six letters, not four) the teacher will formally punish you.

Glinda is not happy.

While I fully understand that stupid is a word with an inherently negative connotation, since when do schools get to go around with a list of forbidden words that aren’t considered curse words?

If someone were to insult a classmate by calling them stupid, then those circumstances certainly warrant discipline.  An insult of any kind should have swift repercussions, regardless of the words chosen.  However, merely describing a situation as stupid and getting into trouble for it seems… stupid. 

You know I had to go there, didn’t you?

Forget book banning, schools are now effectively selectively banning common words they don’t like.

I personally don’t think the term “ugly” is any better than “stupid.”  I can’t think of many situations in which one can use the word ugly in a positive way. Let’s ban that one next! How about “fat?” ” Emaciated”  doesn’t conjure up a big smile, either.

Hell, let’s just pool together a list of words that aren’t nice and forbid kids from saying them.  Then school is guaranteed to be a place that is always affirming and uplifting! 

Tomorrow, the Munchkin and I are going to sit down with a thesaurus.  I’m going to teach him the myriad ways in which you can convey the exact same meaning as the word stupid.  Some of them might even technically be worse than the word stupid.

Except those won’t automatically get him into trouble.


Monday Teeny Poll

Monday, February 7th, 2011
By Glinda

Well, 45% of you think that we shouldn’t be putting three year olds in academic settings in the first place, never mind potty-training rules.  Another 32% believes that schools should be a little more understanding of children and their varying rates of physical development, which are totally out of their control.  15% think that the schools should not have to deal with untrained children, and 7% think that if a school is willing to accept someone’s money, then they should be able to deal.

Today during the Super Bowl I ate many more calories than was seemly, and I blame the spinach dip.  Although I have only myself to blame, as I am the one who made it and brought it.


Celebrity Dad Faceoff 2.0

Friday, February 4th, 2011
By Glinda

Orlando Bloom beat the pants off Owen Wilson, garnering a whopping 73% of the vote.  All right, was he better In the LOTR movies or  in the Pirates of the Caribbean movies?  Do tell!  I mean, I’m thinking half of you are snowed in anyway, so what else are you going to do with yourselves?

Today I’ve got a brand new daddy challenger.  He started off as the mean boss on The Drew Carey Show and now has a show with his own name attached. 

VERSUS









Disclaimer: Manolo the Shoeblogger is not Manolo Blahnik
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