crusty noses.

It is honestly so fun to pick your kids nose when they are asleep. My two currently have sooooo much crust in and around their noses–pillsbury would be jealous. It’s really the only way to accurately clean the “schnozzola” and you don’t need to worry about them whipping their heads around or screaming when you come bolting at them with a wad of Kleenex. Sometimes I’m shocked at the size of the clusters that can even make their way into Ollies nostrils in the first place. Like, how did that booger clump get so big that it was able to drop down into a ‘moms eye view’? Anyway–it’s out, and added to my booger collection. Kidding!! EW.

On account of the holiday season, I’m THANKING my children for GIVING me opportunities left and right to drink alcohol. –annnnnd thanking you, as the reader for allowing this upcoming rant session to occur. Oh–you didn’t know? Sorrrrrrrry.

I can feel it, I just don’t know how to get it.

I’m not going to lay here like a good-for-nothin’ in my bed with my hair in a mom bun and tell you that being a mom is the most amazing and rewarding thing under the sun where you feel nothing but appreciation for raising the darn family and that all is “peaches”. Phewf. IT’S HARD–and it sucks sometimes. No one thanks you, except maybe your toddler when you give them an M&M which is really cute for about 4 seconds until they do something rude again. No one tells you that what you are doing is wonderful and that raising your children will be the hardest thing you do…evvvvvvva.

this adorable moment of silence was brought to you in part by…Penelope Violet, with the help of our sponsors, M&M. 

No one tells you that even though you aren’t “clocking in” for this job every day, that you can’t actually “clock out” because, of course– being a dead beat mom is frowned upon in this day and age. I’m thankful that I haven’t moved out yet–alone that is, to a one bedroom hut in St. Lucia. LISTEN, if I could just change my underwear each day without being asked why my ‘rear-end’ is wiggly, that’d be wonderful. I don’t know about you people, but sometimes, as a stay at home mom, you get stuck.

hi. my name’s ollie. I LEGIT LIVE IN MY CARSEAT. I’m happy here, though.

Stuck in the “goo goo gaa gaa” of it all and feel like you need to bolt out the door the second someone capable of keeping an eye on your kids walks in. That’s actually what I did the other day when my hubby came home. He walked in the door, and I sprinted out–ran a mile, and then came back. HOLY CRAP–DO THAT! Or even walk…walk fast… something. Just get out. It helps. They are legit my Velcro and I love them SO MUCH… BUTTT, my god, does it feel good when you get a break. Someone calls you by your real name, they don’t spill things and barf on you, they don’t insult your jiggly rear end– it’s kinda nice! Stay At Home Drama wouldn’t exist if the kiddies didn’t make me a nut job so I sure am thankful for that. Let me turn off my depression switch and we can chat about fun holiday stuff instead. Like, how my family does an annual yankee swap each year–that’s fun!

I see a ‘Tom Brady chin’ in this boys future.

I AM truly not an ungrateful son of a B, and I’m very fortunate that my family and friends are healthy and happy people (for the most part, because we killed off all the idiots). I’m thankful that the aggravation of a toddler “problem” or a teething baby are my only daily setbacks. I just wanted to VENT over the public internet to get some things off my chest and onto yours tonight– so kind, right?! Hey–someone’s gotta hear it. In the end, there are more good times than bad, and other days you have to SEARCH to find the S.A.H.M. positives–like, being in your pajamas ’til 4pm…and then realizing changing into a new pair for bed would just be silly. Also, there’s that moment when you tuck them into bed and end the night on a high note.  Ollie gets a big wet smooch on the forehead, plugged with the binky, his blankies nestled around him, and goes to sleep (usually requires we “re-plug” him a few times). Penel insists we read “Goodnight Moon” and then sing that lovely “finger family” song from Youtube, followed by “if you’re happy and you know it” and “twinkle twinkle”.  Tonight, as I was walking out of her room–for the fifth or sixth time, she yelled “Love ya!” and blew me a kiss. NOW–that’s cute. 

…and that’s when you feel special as a Mama.


sometimes it’s fun to act stupid, a little ghetto–and like a duck. (…and YES i do this stuff sober.)

Crafts will be coming along, yummy holiday treats, fun pictures, and DIY ideas…so stick with me. Like my children… A.K.A. The Velcro!


p.s. I can’t type anymore because the meatballs are ready and I can smell them from across the house and down the hall. ABOUT TO CONSUME 17.

twick or tweat!

As Penelope and I sat in the playroom drinking our oh-so-spooky halloween smoothies this afternoon (super simple recipe below), I can’t help but get excited for her to actually TRICK OR TREAT tomorrow! Predictably, she saw the Cookie Monster fuzzy costume suit and it was all over, leaving only one option for little Ollie…ELMO. It’ll be cute though–even IF I’m not into the whole “character thing”, I guess I can deal for just one night.  Of course, good old Daddy let Penelope pick her costume out this year.  I guess telling him that she still doesn’t really understand the concept so I could still have her dress up as anything I wanted–didn’t fly. Whatever! Me want cookie too, let’s face it. 

cup of water-cup of organic carrot/orange v8-cup of frozen mixed berries-1 oikos mixed berry greek yogurt-shot of lime juice. Blend and draaaank.

She thinks it’s so funny that you can go up to houses and get free candy for ONE NIGHT ONLY (despite the fact that she’s been doing that at my parents house since birth), and she keeps saying “twick aw tweatin’ mom” and holding an empty bowl in front of me, as if I should fill it up and tell her I like her costume…aka her footy pajamas. I swear, kids learn from the age of ZERO that they aren’t going to listen to their parents unless threatened or bribed. Don’t understand where I’m coming from? Please allow me to elaborate…for example…eh heh hemmm…

practicing the ghost duck face for Halloween on social media.

I give Penelope her lunch, she doesn’t eat it.  I tell her she can have a special treat if she finishes her plate…and she licks the plate clean. Done. Bribed her–mission completed. I mean, it’s the truth. Why kill yourself over the everyday struggle of mealtime? BRIBE the kid and you’re good. Kidding. Disclaimer: DON’T take parenting tips from me. Ha. Let’s just say it’s working pretty well for Halloween season.  We are trying to limit her treat intake to ONE a day because it’s become nuts this month. On the flip side, she is obsessed with her oral hygiene.

cutest human jack-o-lantern I’ve seen in a lonnnng time.

…Then there was this night–two nights ago, where I was laying in Penel’s little toddler bed with her, doing the nightly torture routine–I mean bedtime ritual, and she nearly brought me to tears.  After reading a few books to her, including some new ones we added to our Halloween collection, she paused, looked at me while holding my face in her little palm, and said “you need to cut your eyebrows”. I almost peed my pants laughing, and even had her repeat herself to make sure I was hearing correctly. Seriously child? When I don’t groom, I expect you to be the LAST one to notice. You and your father, both.  How does she even know that I trim them in the first place? I literally can’t. Like, hi…worry about toddler things, like  brushing your teeth, going potty, and when you’ll score your next m&m–instead of my unibrow. Thannnks. 

make them do the messy part. They’ll like it because they like “gross stuff”

We figured it’d be fun for Penelope to help with the pumpkin carving this year.  Daddy and P emptied out all that “gross stuff” as Penel called it, and I roasted the seeds and carved the face of it!  Daddy wanted a total boring jack-o-lantern to mimic the bright orange pail that every kid and their mother has from wal-mart, but we had different plans.  I said… If we are going to make a “basic bitch” pumpkin, we are giving that broad nice plump lips and winged eyelashes.  She can still have the hillbilly teeth like all the jacks do.  Everybody wins.  Penel said “oh this is gweat mom–good job makin’ my punkin face”.  Daddy also admitted he couldn’t have made it that cute.

she’s not basic. we stuck a mason jar inside our JANE-o-lantern and loaded it with LED candle tealights for the glow.
rinse, mix them up in a bowl with olive oil, sea salt, cracked black pepper, paprika, and garlic powder…bake on a foil lined tray evenly spread out on 350 degrees for around 25-30 mins until they start to brown. Boom. Putting them on a brussel sprouts salad tomorrow night with homemade apple vinaigrette!
yummy snackeroo. PRETTY too– from the paprika!

 Her new things/lovely habits include but are not limited to,  playing pretend where she calls my husband and I “Mommy and Daddy Dino” apparently from a show or something;  making chicken clucking sounds (BOCK! BOCK!) at the top of her lungs while walking slowly with her rear end slightly sticking out;  Taking toys from her brother while sweetly saying “You don’t need that toy Ollie Boy–it’s MINE”; Using the word “because” when explaining reasons for her actions; and lastly, referring to us, her parents, as “guys”.  Used in a sentence… “Hey guys, what are ya doin’?”—OH–and telling Ollie to “say AHH” with her mouth wide open modeling what he should do so she can shove a toy in his trap. She’s got it all figured out. Clearly.

we’ve got our bedtime Halloween stash of books ready to go. we’ve only read these 89 times throughout the year already but heyyyyy.

Why is everything ‘poop and pee’ already? I totally thought that was a 4 year old boy thing? NOPE–pretty sure Penelope requests poop for lunch–DAILY! “Penel–what do you feel like having for lunch? Macaroni n’ cheese or chicken nuggets?” …and this is what you get, “I want poop, mom. Poop chicken or Macaroni Poop for snack”.  Delightful, thank you for your order.  Happy to serve you.

Perfectly positioned pumpkin. Kid never wears pants… and quite frankly, I have bigger fish to fry.

I find that without coffee, I am a total BEAST.  Ask my husband–or Penelope for that matter. I am nodding off before 9 am, while feeding Ollie…or I have zero patience–due to lack of energy.  It was 1 o’clock the other day and I actually said to my child “Mommy needs coffee before she hurts someone” and Penelope reminded me that hurting someone isn’t nice, and off we went for the daily run. It’s unbelievable though, it’s a total game changer for a mom (in my opinion) when you throw caffeine into the mix. It’s like, you become human again–as opposed to a horrific zombie mother who grunts and huffs n’ puffs until the first sip.  Lord give me patience, AND MY MEDIUM ICED. Pronto! Thanks Lord. 

even Ollie is in the “fall spirit” with his pumpkin banana teething wafers from Plum Organics.


Are you excited for Halloween? “YES! Them will have all the special treats like lollipops and tootsie rolls and special pops and more tootsie rolls…oh yum.”

What are you dressing up as for Halloween? “a cookie monster!”

How many treats will you get on Halloween? “cannndy and tootsie rolls too. 2!”

What are you having for Halloween dinner? “Poop dinner and Poop macaronis and polka dots.”

Who are you ‘trick or treating’ with? “mommy and daddy annnnnd pumpkins.”

How many houses will you trick or treat at? “2”

then I wonder why my neck hurts–if I wasn’t doing these ostrich moves to get on camera, I wouldn’t be sore. HA. Also put this pic up on the blog for the large use of black and orange.

Ghostly Trees!

Here, we added a cute little owl WHOOOOOOse eyes are glowing and ready for Halloween. Yup–you guessed it, $1.00–at Dollar Tree!

YES–Ball® makes limited edition purple mason jars and YES you can make adorablely cheap crafts with them!! Toddler friendly Halloween decorations that will keep you and the Kidd-o busy for an hour or two–coming your way! I made this one up, while I was unpacking my Halloween decor last week…annnnd I wanted to share it!!  These are “ghostly trees”.

Ball® exclusive purple mason jars, floral wire, wire cutters (or strong kitchen scissors) bag of decorative rocks. (We had the black, but the clear stones would be best to show off the purple!) string or fishing line, twigs, lace tulle or cream gauzy/tulle fabric

If you haven’t noticed, I like Dollar Tree… So that’s where I grabbed the styrofoam, floral wire, wire cutters, rocks, and string. I bought the tulle rolls at Walmart for 2.97, and the Ball® mason jars can be purchased at! We mixed our trees up by using the Ball® Heritage Collection Pint and Quart sized jars.


arrange your twigs and branches to look “tree-ish” and then you are ready to wrap the wire around their trunks. To make this craft adult friendly–you could spray paint the sticks silver for a more fancy look!

First off, head outside, let the kids play! While you’re out there, they will LOVE searching the yard for the perfect “creepy” sticks to create their ghost trees with…(and if they’re like my toddler–they’ll enjoy poking you with the sticks too!) Gather a good handful of sticks and branches that will make up the “tree” part of the craft! You’ll want them 12-18 inches long or so… and obviously you can cut them/snap them to be shorter.

take a kitchen knife or scissors and just chop away at it until you can push it through the top of the mason jar.

Cut and shape a chunk of the green styrofoam to insert into the top of the mason jar and shove that sucker way down to the bottom. You could add a drop of hot glue to the inside base of the jar to stick it to, but you don’t have to!

once you’ve positioned the branches to look like a tree, wrap the floral wire tightly around the base! (about 3-4 inches up from bottom)

Put the silver ring of the mason jar cover back on, leaving the disc off, so you can easily stick the tree into the styrofoam at the bottom of the jar. Again, you could add a blob of hot glue to the styrofoam so it sticks to the “tree” when you push it down–but you don’t have to!
Add some tulle to the bottom of the jar surrounding the styrofoam so it doesn’t show through jar. If you gather the tulle and bunch it up around the styrofoam it’ll work best.
Add a few of the black rocks on top of the styrofoam around the “trunk” of your tree and it’ll add a little weight to your jar and keep the tree in place as well.
NOW. Make your ghosts! As silly as it sounds, grab a few paper towels and cut them into small squares about 4×4 and crumple it up to be the ‘head’ of the ghost. Have cottonballs? Use one per head if you’d rather! Cut your roll of cream lace or tulle in about 8 inch long pieces (leaving the width as is), and place the crumbled paper towel in the center of the fabric. Fold the fabric over and gather it under the ghosts head. Tie in a simple bow with the string. Make the bow loops big enough so you can hang the ghosts on the tree once you’e made them all.

Image-9 Image-10 Image-11

Make anywhere between 5-8 depending on size of trees and preference. You can trim your ghosts to whatever size and shape you want! Hang those little cuties on the trees and there ya have it! a $4-$8 halloween craft! (depending on what you already have at home for supplies!)


Want to make your jars glow? Add battery operated string lights to put inside the jars or LED tea lights to make your jars glow purple!

*These Heritage Collection Ball® Mason Jars were sent to me for free by Ball® Canning and all opinions are my own in any and all use of this product.

apples and aggravation.

“I can’t wait to make paleo desserts with all these apples we picked” -No one. Ever.     #addthesugar #addthebutter #addtheflavor  #screwthecavemen
she’d rather eat the ones off the ground that the bugs have already started on.

I’ve literally caught my pinky toe on 3 things today. It’s the shortest toe, too….like wtf. #itsred #itssore #itscurrentlyseperatedfromtheothers #lonelytoe #thislittlepiggy #fishhookslegchairs #andtricycles #WHYAMIBAREFOOT #itscoldoutnow…oh, and why haven’t I stopped walking so close to the legs of the dining room chairs after the first and second time I SNAGGED that lil’ sucker. One day, it’s just going to break off…it’s taken so much abuse lately.

the face of a tickle victim.

You open the drawer and grab the biggest spoon you can find only to realize the Nutella jar has just enough for a sam’s club sample… And you wanted a shovels worth. #theynevergiveyouenough #SOweswitched #toBJs

going cross-eyed to ensure she completely cleans off her finger for the next round.

You join crossfit thinking you’re cool as shit and on the second “real class” you leave walking like a newborn baby calf and are calling the “wall ball” every name in the book. #notbadassatall #myasshurts #actually #alotofthingshurt #dontcare #goingtomorrow for more blood, sweat, and tears.  Let’s face it–mostly tears.

please notice the word “suck” on the wall. Yeah–it’s describing the class! But–you’ll feel SO good once you’ve accomplished the “SUCK”

..there is actually graffiti on the wall stating “EMBRACE THE SUCK” so…I will accept the fact that for 7-30 minutes there will be hell to pay while I’m there but I will leave there with my head held high and my legs like J-E-L-L-O.

…then one day you wake up with two cheek pimples baffled because you haven’t had those since 8th grade and your husband tells you (4 days later) he’s been using your pillow for the past week. #oilydome #seriouslybro #thanksforpubertyroundtwo #wd40head #mrclean #betterthanfartingonmypillow

ugh, dad… we got work to do.

Ollie gets SO excited when he sees me stirring his cereal in with his fruits and veggies that I can only think of one thing–welcome to the family kid, we all love carbs ’round here. This morning I put the bowl of cereal right on his highchair tray as he was sitting up oh-so-sweetly eating a rubber block.  BET YA CAN’T GUESS WHAT HAPPENED NEXT!? Yup! He fisted it. Little chunky fist pounds the side of the bowl and completely flips the thing as if to grab a pile and eat it…or say, “yo–lady–get the spoon to my mouth a lil’ quicker”.  Penelope was even shocked that he was this aggressive! Could this mean he is learning from her? Nooooooooooooooo. If there is a god… let him stay calm and sweet. 

when natural light hits those eyeballs… ughhhhh. (Hanna Anderssen hat from the outlet in Wrentham! $3!)

Even though we are total frenemies, Penelope definitely amazes me on MOST days.  She gets so excited when it rains out that she’ll give me the side eye, deepen her voice, and say “yet’s go jump in puddoos, mom!”  or “I need my waincoat n’ my boots if you want to pay ow-side” Then we get in the car to run Halloween crafting errands (stay tuned) and she starts singing “if all of the randrops” and “itsy bitsy spider” and proceeds to tell me “you sing those songs when it’s wainin’ out.”

When we sell Penelope, she will not come with a gift receipt. Apologies in advance to the buyer.

Things I found in my dust pan this morning:  Elmo sticker, corn from last night, bobbie pin, a purple crayon wrapper, an Old Navy clearance tag for 3.99 (wicked cute pair of pants for P), mini elastics, glitter, toilet paper pieces, a hair ball, a blue marshmallow from a box of frozen cereal, a ghost halloween sticker…annnnnnd one yellow lego, which I stepped on and almost cried…ok, maybe I did cry…just a little.
May I remind you I haven’t swept the bedrooms yet.
Moral of the story: WE are a filthy family…who need to sweep more. 

$2.00 Halloween craft anyone? (buy 2 Ball Mason jars–$2 …or use ones that you have around your house–free.  Grab a bag of creepy spiders and a bag of eyeballs from dollar tree. ($2) Put them in mason jars! Close lid! DONE. (for the spiders i stuck a piece of toulle in jar so i could position them as ‘crawling’…and i had the jars already so it cost me $2)

…and it was just like that, that my husband and I realized if we want both nutty kids to be in bed and asleep by 8:30…we should start at noon. Holy cannoli–tonight was no exception to disaster. Crying over dinner, shirtless, then pantless–crying because she didn’t want a bath, crying because she didn’t want to get out of the bath.  Crying when conditioner didn’t work to make her hair easier to brush, crying to get her pajamas on. Crying for a yogurt pop, then crying because it was too cold. Crying because we said she could save it in the freezer for tomorrow, and crying again because she didn’t want to wait ’til tomorrow to eat it–after she just cried saying she didn’t want it. All the while, poor Ollie is tossing and turning in his crib each time he hears the ogre moaning in the next room.  If I wasn’t so freakin’  tired, I’d pour myself a gallon of wine and drink it under my covers.  Dear tomorrow–please give me patience…and enough energy to drink wine after bath time.

Love always,

Your President, CEO, and Founder of the “Complaint Dept.”

where have i been all your life?

photo 2-60
no one really cares that I didn’t fill my brows in because all you’re looking at is HIM anyway. UGH. Not enough kisses on the planet for that face!

Ohhh, ya know–I took a blog hiatus. When in reality, I’ve been busy with summer “stuff”…things like, starting Ollie on solids, talking Penelope off the tantrum ledge–daily, making chicken nuggets and mac n’ cheese out the wazoo…aaand managing to barely stay awake as long as my toddler does.  I haven’t ignored you on purpose–PROMISE…it’s just life takes over and you enjoy your summer instead of staring at a computer screen typing your bologna for all to see, while your child repeatedly hits the “ESC” button. JK! I love this mac, and you love how much I vent about my ‘mom problems’. I’M BACK.  Basically, what I mean is–if I want to go anywhere in life,  I should probably type more…just sayin’. 

photo 1-56
like i said earlier on Instagram and Facebook …the girls got hands from Jesus!

As I sat in the hairdresser’s chair a few nights ago I wondered what the strange sounds were all around me (and by “strange sounds”…I’m referring to NO SOUNDS) because I was sitting in straight silence, with the occasional hair dryer blow and I couldn’t get enough of it. I closed my eyes with excitement and thought…at this very moment I have no one to reprimand, no one to burp, no butts to wipe, and…even better… they call me “Alex” here…like who is “Alex”?…I don’t even know that broad anymore. I thought I had completely transformed into “Mommy” or “MOM” or “MA!” …BAM…then the euphoric sound of AIR ends as I see my phone go off. Just as I’m about to smile and inhale/exhale without a huff and puff of ‘motherOfAToddler frustration’, my hubby texts me saying Ollie has been crying from 7:30-9 straight, and that he’s tried “everything”. I reply, oh-so-sweetly and without zero sarcasm (yeah, ok!)…“BRI–he has three necessities–eat, sleep, and shizzle…POSSIBLY gas–he has gas too! Figure it out DAD..and get back to me…actually don’t!”  C’mon bro–let a lady get some peace for just a few hours. You got this…or at least we can pretend you do. Sigh.

the aftermath is worth the minor aggravation of the “daddy” text. Love how my sis can color your hair without making it obvious!!  my sister in-law got a kick out of me cropping out my ‘tired mom face’ in the pic. 

For those who are unaware… “Willow Salon” is now changed to “Halo Hair & Body” same location in Bristol, RI at 259 Thames Street. Andi (my sis) still owns it and fabulously performs makeovers on a daily basis.  If you are a talented stylist–they are looking for you!

photo 1-55
exhibit A. green beans!

So…Ollie was fussing in the high chair eagerly awaiting the introduction to pears, as Penelope ran into the playroom. She comes out holding a recorder and one morocca and says “i pay some nice moozic faw baby Oyee”.  I told her that was very sweet of her to try and calm him down.  Just then, she blew into the recorder like it was LITERALLY her last exhale ever and he jumped a good 3 inches off the high chair seat. She stopped his fussing though, and he ate his pears. Then puked, smiled again, tooted and was done with pears.  I think it’s safe to say he “sharted” from the “moozic” of Penelope’s one-man-band.  She scared the pears out of him. Wait… technically, she scared the–YOU GET IT! 

photo 2-59
Penelope and her FAVORITE MALE. She’s so in love it’s great. I’m not bad though, I delivered this guy coffee while he was working. I mean, he paid for it, but i delivered–because I AM ACCOMMODATING!

You can expect multiple posts a week, starting soon!  I have so much to tell you and so many pictures to share!!  Feel free to comment if you’ve shared the same summer experiences! Most of the places we go–or went…will be in my new category of “Get Up n’ Go!” Check facebook and instagram for post updates, or sign up to e-mail follow (only on

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throw ya hands in the air like ya just don’t care! …aaaand thank god i shaved my pits because daddy snuck this pic at the hotel! I’ll be posting more about our Poconos trip soon!
bye Elmo, it’s been real.


…and i quote…

WARNING: These are word-for-word conversations with my two year old.

photo 5-25
hey guysh…have you sheen my shnorkel?

(Penelope –looking out the window at daddy on the tractor.)
“Daddy? …dad?? BRIAN MORSE…Get out of the street, the cars are comin!”
Mommy does a double take … wait… Did she just call her father by his first AND last name?! YUP. She totally did. In between halfway peeing my pants and dying laughing, I reminded her that she calls him “Daddy” and his friends call him Brian.
She then reminded me that they also call him “Bri” and that mommy calls him “Bri” too… I caaannnn’t. I mean, really…I just can’t with this broad. 

photo 1-44
shortly after playing in the fish tank, she decided to become one.

The very SECOND I forget to latch the bathroom door in an attempt to keep her out of there, she sneaks in and takes the glade candle off the back of the toilet and asks to blow it out. I tell her to “make a wish” and she blows it out…with more spit than air. She looks at me with her pointer finger in the air and says “jusss one more time mommy–n’ thass it!” so, I re-light it and she blows it out again…
I ask her what she wished for and she looks up at me with a big smile and says “MORE CANDLES…HOORAY!” And commences the ‘happy birthday’ song. It’s ALWAYS daddy’s birthday. God forbid Mommy get some cake/and/or recognition of any kind around here. Also child–when you wish for things…how about a maid? How about a trip for mommy to go to Hawaii…alone..!? How about a trip for mommy to go ANYWHERE alone?!  Never mind Dollar Tree birthday candles …just some ideas for next time.

photo 2-48
duck face…nailed it.


photo 4-30
cheapest bib ever… $1 bandana!

Mommy: Hey penel…Want to go to the new library soon ?
Penelope: Nope I’m good… I don’t!
Mommy: k…cool…

Mommy: We’re going to eat some kale and corn with your chicken nuggets for lunch today, k?
Penelope:  oh OK so popcorn and mushrooms?
Mommy: yup-exactly.

Mommy: (yawn)
Penelope: We go get cawfee mommy?

“Tickle tickle yittle oyyeeeee” as she’s squeezing the very life out of his foot (pinky toe is purple at this point)

photo 3-36
with toes like these, I’ll be climbin’ trees in no time.

While laying together in her bed for bedtime…“Mommy..ah you a monster?”
No penel… (even though I turn monster-ish when her nap is skipped–as does she)
“Oh…yeah… Just mommy right?!”

“Penelope–did you have fun at the party yesterday?”
“What did you do at the party?”
“I hit kids mommy. It’s fun”
“Yes– you did hit kids, and that was very naughty.  Hands are not for hitting.
“Oh…ya… It’s ok though, mommy…I be nice”

She’s over biting, which is great because mommy, daddy, and Ollie are no longer chew toys.  HOWEVER, she’s moved on to pinching, scratching, hitting, and SQUEEZING. One step forward and 35 back right?? I fully blame my husband for letting her have bites of his whey protein bars and for allowing her to watch UFC. She’s becoming the hulk.

Her hugs are never soft, her squeezes are like a boa constrictor. …It’s really not okay, though–my kids a girl bully (we joke) and was beating boys (and girls) up in the bouncy house at the birthday party we had last weekend. As if I can run in and pull her out while she’s triangle choking her friend in the middle of the inflatable “octagon” … My child was actually pinning boys twice her age to the point of tears, then she would get up and walk away while shrugging her shoulders saying “he cryin’ mommy”.

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this face almost always follows a naughty act.

Well gee, …I can’t imagine why he’s crying– (even though he was literally 4 years old and twice her size, I wanted to crawl in a hole as every parent is probably wondering what the frig goes on at Penelope’s house to make her wrestle like this) … The worst part is, she finds NOTHING WRONG with her actions, and makes a face like what’s his/her problem while she’s “submitting” them to the ground. As I’m yelling “LET GO OF HIM/HER” or “GET OFF OF HIM/HER” she’s looking around as if I don’t exist and laying horizontal over whatever victim struggles underneath her. She honestly thinks its funny to hug someone until they fall down to the ground and she lands on top of them.  I joke now, and “it will pass” they say when I ask my mom/aunts for advice on controlling her rough-neck behavior. Well ladies, (and gentlemen) if it doesn’t “pass” …she’ll be in juvi and we can all go visit her there during the designated hours for doing so! Her random ROUGHNESS and sudden urges to squeeze or attack are much like a shark or venomous snake. Freakin’ great, I just compared my two year old daughter to not one—but TWO deadly animals, humans everywhere would be afraid to encounter. Here’s the thing…If she gets a reaction from a kid (whining, screaming) she treats it like a game where she antagonizes to keep on getting a good scream from the other kiddo…you remember from school…cause and effect! –Honest to God, though–she has a complete smile on her face the whole time she’s doing it.  It could be an evil smile (most likely is) because she knows she’s being too rough–but it’s a smile!  This usually goes on for a few rounds until, of course, she’s distracted by a jelly bean.

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…after mauling several 2-4 year olds in the bouncy house, she found peace and tranquility in the arms of Elmo. 

I swear it depends on the kids she’s with…funny story–we just had a play date today with  3 other 2 year old toddlers and not ONCE did I have to talk to her about hitting. She played great the entire time! …I don’t get the mind of a toddler. Do you?
As her parents, we are proud of her for the GOOD she does do (on occasion). She’s so smart in so many ways, she was chit chatting in full sentences before she turned two, uses manners, remembers what you tell her, learns to do things on the first or second time they’re done, loves to be outside, sing songs, help cook, etc. It’s just that she hugs SO HARD that she brings you to the ground. Literally. It never seems to be out of anger. It’s like playful squeeeeeezing–but in your FACE… And really hard. Hey she’s 2…she’ll learn… “They say”…

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Ronda Rousey Jr. over here. Joking… She doesn’t actually watch UFC. Only commercials, if anything!…However, I AM still wondering how she gets such good form with that triangle choke she was performing in the bouncy house.  Who knows… I keep telling her to squeeze her stuffed animals and pillows if she needs to squeeze something. I keep telling her that humans don’t seem to like her squeezing habits. We will see how long it takes for this phase to end…

t-shirts & headbands!

Who doesn’t love a stylish headband and a comfy t-shirt? These soft fabrics and adorable prints will jazz up any toddler or mama!  Wait–it gets better…today, I’m featuring two amazing small businesses run by WOMEN. Oh. Yeah. Sisters are doin’ it for themselves.  These ladies both had a vision, and put their creativity into apparel! Wondering who they are? LET ME TELL YOU!!!

we’re talking this combo of cuteness!

First off, we have LittleBeansCo., an adorable mama and baby/toddler shop!  Stephanie Jonas created her clothing line through inspiration from her two boys.  Describing her little guys as free spirited, wild, hippie babes–her line of t’s and onesies expresses just that!  She uses only the best quality shirts, with a kid-friendly message printed on their front.  Check out Penelope’s PERFECTLY worded t-shirt from LittleBeansCo!

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WILD CHILD FOREVER. Yupppppp…she’s pretty much nailed that phrase!
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surfing on “my” rock…wearing nothing but the best! LittleBeansCo and Vaydagirl!

I love me a good story of a successful woman…good thing I have three women for you in this post!  Sooo many reasons to buy–first and foremost–the cuteness… HOWEVER, coming in at a close second, you’re supporting a small business run by a Mama. Sa-weet!

know any hippie mamas who are having/have a girl? They’ll need this! is where you order! Their sizes range from 3-months through 8-years, and adult sizes for the mamas, making them a great gift!  All you need to do is pick the saying/phrase that best suits the recipient!! (She’s got everything from “high fives & fist bumps” to “pretty FLY for a little guy”…who could resist?!) LittleBeans are also on Instagram (@littlebeans_co) and Etsy (LittleBeansCO).  Don’t worry Dads–shirts for you are in the works too!  Head over to her instagram for the latest styles and shirt designs, as well as occasional giveaways.  She’s always updating her social media to show off what’s new at LittleBeansCo. The shirt below was inspired by her son’s conversation on the playground! Too stinken cute…and he’s right on target with that one.

it is SO TRUE. Only the coolest kids fight their naps…right?!

Now let’s talk headbands!! VaydaGirl headbands was established by two local ladies I grew up with–Audrey Johnson (Lamendola) and Jessica Cooper, who took hair accessories to a whole new level. They wanted to create a headband that was comfortable, fashionable, and could be worn all day without discomfort–especially for yoga! They began using their personal sewing machines to start off, came up with the six unique styles…and voila! Vaydagirl came to be!

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we bought the “hypnotic” print in “knotted girl” (above) and the “foxy” print in the “bow girl”(below) which is great if you need an adjustable headband!

They started wearing their VaydaGirl Headbands (named for co-owner Audrey’s daughter) and people started asking where to buy them! They quickly developed their website and within two short months, had to move their production site to Fall River, MA due to high demand of the headbands! Pretty cool. On, you can personally customize any style headband with any print you see available.  The best thing about Vaydagirl headbands is that their prints are always changing. If you see one you love–grab it now because once a particular print is gone…it’s gone!

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this is the adjustable bow in “foxy”…fits perfectly on both of our noggins–so we can share!

They are sold locally at: 

    • Pure Barre, studio offering apparel (1000 Division Road. East Greenwich, RI & Chapel View Blvd. Cranston, RI)
    • Rhode Island Yoga Center, yoga studio offering apparel (99 Fortin Road. Kingston, RI)
    • Tropical Gangsters, clothing and accessories boutique (375 Thames St. Newport, RI)
    • David-Max, home goods and artist boutique (187 Main St. East Greenwich, RI)
    • North End Yoga, yoga studio offering apparel  (256 Hanover St, Boston, MA)
    • Savas Studios, clothing and accessories boutique (456 Hanover St. Boston, MA)
    • Salon Xhair salon (3087 Post Rd. Warwick, RI)
    • Glistening Goddess, spray tan and consignment shop (65 Weybosset St. Providence, RI & 622 Killingly St. Johnston, RI)
    • Ocean State Cross Fit, cross fit studio offering apparel (41 Webb St, Cranston, RI)
    • Tyler English Fitness, fitness center offering apparel (5A Cheryl Drive, Canton, CT)
    • Nancy Ogift and events (23 Catoonah Street Ridgefield, CT 06877
    • AND MORE! (art festivals and farmer’s markets by season–check the site!)
If there’s a man in your life who wants to rock the bands, they even have MAN headbands to buy! 
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here’s a man wearing one!

Fun Fact: Vaydagirl uses organic cotton label tags on all of their headbands and their packaging is made from 60% recycled materials, making shipping the ‘vaydas’ more earth friendly!

posted up in style.

In the picture above, Penel is wearing the “Hypnotic” print in “knotted girl” which is actually MINE, but they fit all noggins.  She always asked to “borrow” my headbands, but usually doesn’t return them. Can you blame her?

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she’s glaring at daddy on the tractor because she can’t stand the sound of that thing.

we’re so happy we ordered–you should too!

red, white & rude

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American horror story: Toddlers

We are FOURTH OF JULY ready! How about you?  We’re making cucumber/vidalia/beet salad and a patriotic sangria to share this year, as we’ll be attending the ANNUAL Bristol 4th of July festivities with our red, white, and BOOZE in tow.  Please excuse my two year old daughter, as she does not know flag etiquette.  If you count dragging the mini flags across the cement and whacking flowers with them as “what to do”–then we’re golden, otherwise–she’s the least “american girl” that I know. Also, she prefers to sing “happy birthday” while waiving them, instead of “america the beautiful”…ya follow me?–she doesn’t get it!  photo-34

*Stars n’ Stripes Sangria*
1 jug of Carlo Rossi Rhine (white)
1 bottle of welch’s white grape juice
1/2 (the pint bottle) of peach schnapps
1 bottle of polar strawberry/watermelon seltzer for fizz (use any flavor you like!)
1 cup of lime juice (fresh squeezed or bottle)
Lots of fruit! I picked red apples, blueberries and strawberries because HELLO– they’re red, white and blue! Duh. 
Throw some limes in too, for color. If you cut the apples laying horizontal, you get a really cool star shape where the seeds were (instead of slicing from stem to end– slice across instead!)  Put your sangria in a Ball brand mason jar–filled with ice (and some of that sinfully soaked fruit), and you have adorable arm candy for the holiday!

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fryin’ up some tasty flowers with my american chopsticks
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Auntie Addie got her nails did by MOI as payment for watching my kiddies! Am I a cheap-o? Nahhhh…Auntie loves the torture!

Fireworks tonight and the parade tomorrow…how much better can ya get?…well…there’s always that beach chair…alone…on an island somewhere…anywho–we have gone to the Bristol Fourth of July parade every year since I can remember! It is definitely much more fun being a kid at a parade, but if mama can put sangria in her sippy cup–everyone’s happy. Also feed me snacks, I like snacks with my drinks. 

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she sat for 10 minutes straight with this sucker in front of her!
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special treat at the Bristol 4th of July Concert series!

I’m bustin’ out the radio flyer wagon this year to haul the kiddies around. Well really, Ollie will be in the baby bjorn attached to me like velcro–per usual, and Penel will be strapped into the wagon with all our cooler/diaper bag swag, until some very daring individual decides to unleash her amongst the tens of thousand parade-goers. We should probably avoid the red, white and blue with her–and stick to neon green…you know.. like the asphalt workers wear so they don’t lose each other on the job.

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happy baby. gangster baby. happy-gangster baby.

My aunt lives right on the parade route which makes pee/poop runs a breeze–especially when your toddler enjoys pooping in her pull-ups these days. YESSSS, I knowwww…we totally went backwards with the potty skills. DON’T JUDGE ME– I was very pregnant and very lazy. I’ll be nursing in private, too… versus out on the sidewalk with the saxophones of the 78th high school band passing by. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good band–but they don’t need any distractions (my chest) while trying to remember the tune to “your a grand ole flag”. For crying out loud, they’re already trying to walk, play the darn instrument, AND catch water from the squirty bottle being shot into their mouth by the “water person” who’s NOT in head-to-toe polyester. Phew. Poor things… all…that…fabric… thank goodness for them, it looks like we are getting 70-ish weather. I’m sure those outfits smell lovely from sweat by the end of the conga line– so 70-ish sounds hot enough.

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These beautiful bottom feeding aphrodesiacs came from The Boathouse in Tiverton, RI. They were literally caught right there in front of the restaurant. Everyone should eat there at least once this summer. I always get the scallops. LOCAL–and delish!
It’s all fun and games until you’re caught trying to consume a t-shirt at Target.

…stay tuned for my next post ALL ABOUT APPAREL! 

have a seat.

Go Cosco, Go! Tell your friends and families that there is a new car seat retailing for under $50! The Scenera NEXT car seat by Cosco is only $46 at Walmart and is one of the only car seats on the market to fit three across in most vehicles (for the Mamas out there with three times the fun) This seat can be forward or rear facing, allowing all babes from 5-40 pounds to use it. It’s got side impact protection and machine washable fabric (if your kiddo is/was a puker, this will come in handy…eh-hem, Penelope!)…Check out the adorable pattern and the cute cup holder for that sippy cup on-the-go. The cup holder is actually dishwasher safe, so in other words–no more cup holder crud. Comfortable seat padding to keep those buns happy for the whole trip! There are several adjustment options for the 5-point harness, so as your little one grows, you can adjust the straps accordingly!


Want one? Head to a Walmart near you, and take a look.  A perfect car seat for a growing family!  More importantly, an AFFORDABLE car seat to grow with your family.  It comes in 6 adorable prints and solid colors too–to fit any style!

So many people need an “extra” car seat for a second vehicle or for “grandma & grandpa’s car” and since the Cosco Scenera NEXT is under $50, you won’t feel guilty purchasing a few–especially since it’s a third of the price of most convertible car seats.

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Here she is all excited to go ride the “horsies” on the mall carousel.

As we all know, toddlers can be hard to please–but Penelope loves her new Cosco Scenera NEXT car seat.  I asked her how she liked her new seat and she smiled and said “I comfy Mommy!” It’s a win for Cosco! TODDLER APPROVED!

WIN THIS CAR SEAT! (+ a $25 Walmart Gift Card!) It’s easy!  Simply follow ME! and @stayathomedrama (Instagram and Twitter)  Must follow the blog to be eligible to win.  A random follower will be chosen AS THE WINNER on Friday, June 26th by 10 pm! Good Luck! Keep reading!