December 21, 2009

The Melodramommy Makeover

So you spend nine months watching your body transform. If the fact that being pregnant and watching snapping zippers and popping buttons burst off your clothes or stretch marks paint your pot belly purple wasn't drastic enough, you also endure the commentary of well-meaning family, friends, co-workers, and even strangers remarking about your new waddle, or how you have the "hugest belly they've ever seen." My personal favorite was being asked: "Are you sure there's just one baby in there!" As if I didn't feel huge enough! Then, to add insult to injury, the horrific mistake of being asked how far pregnant you are AFTER you have already given birth!

Well, the day comes when baby is out, belly has shrunk--somewhat, and it's time for a Melodramommy Makeover. To one of my dearest mommy friends, Rebecca, who asked for my advice on her upcoming haircut, this post is for you.

Melodramommy Makeover Tips:

1.) HAIR: Go to and click on the Hollywood Makeover, where in seconds you can upload a picture of yourself and it will let you virtually try on hundreds of hairstyles, lengths, and colors. You can see what style best fits your face and personality, without any risk or commitment, and no longer wonder how you would look if you had Jennifer Aniston's hair. It will let you print it out and/or email it to yourself so you can bring it with you to your hairdresser. And, best of all, this service is absolutely free!

2.) MAKE UP: At your nearest mall, go get a makeover at the department store counter. My favorite was going to Hudson Belk and trying on the fabulous Bobbi Brown make up. I found some new colors that looked best on my skin. Actually, after trying their under-eye corrector and concealer--I'm hooked. Such a great way to hide the dark circles from late night and middle of the night baby wake up calls.

Another option could be to go to Mary Kay website: and do their virtual make over. Again, upload a photo and try on those bold and brand new shades you've been wondering about. While your on their web site, you can locate a mary kay independent beauty consultant, and if you choose, you can host a Mary Kay make up party for all you and your melodramommy friends. Your independent beauty consultant will usually offer you a discount or free products for hosting a party. What a great way to try on new shades and creams and pamper yourself while at a discount!

3.) CLOTHES: The biggest advice I can offer is learn what colors look good on your skin type. I went years buying a brown sweater or shirt and NEVER really wearing it because it just didn't do anything for me. Then, I wear shirt in a deep blue hue, it could be the oldest t-shirt, but everyone is complementing me on the color. Lesson here: certain colors make you look good depending on your hair, eyes, and skin. To learn about what colors will look best on you, and how to dress for your body type go to: This web site will  also will tell you how to figure out your face shape and thus, what hair cuts will look best on you.

Well, good luck for now. And, let's never forget, that while some outward pampering is always fun, it's your inward beauty and heart that is what makes you the most outwardly beautiful. And on that note, it's no wonder my Melodramommy friend is so stunning!

Posted by Laura

December 20, 2009


Today, I’m transitioning into life with two toddlers. But the day will come when, tomorrow, I’ll be sending them off to college, squeezing a soaked, wrinkled handkerchief that I swore I’d never need. On that day, I want to look back and know that I did my very best to savor all those precious fleeting moments and know with confidence that I was resilient.  I want to know I lovingly taught my children values, character, integrity, respect, and love—every day--even the days when I questioned if my efforts were having any influence at all. I don't want to look back, wondering where the time went, and regretfully wish I would have given more hugs, indulged more of my daughter's invitations to join her tea parties, or play in her "princess castle," or squeeze my little son's chubby thighs, let him fall asleep in my arms and watch him breathe. To do so takes persistence, patience, perspective, and prioritizing.

Maybe, like me, you’re a new mom searching to find meaning and much needed humor in the everyday mundane, sometimes underappreciated, often unpredictable, and definitely outrageous whirlwind of events that can occur on an hourly basis. Join me on this proactive, parental journey of intentionally taking the time to pause, reflect, share, breathe, laugh, cry, and do it all over again tomorrow. Let’s move forward in motherhood, keeping that day, tomorrow, in mind from the very beginning. Tomorrow is my mommyspiration. What’s yours?

Posted by Laura

December 19, 2009

Hello Kitty, Goodbye Nursing

Well, it's time to wean. And, no, I'm not referring to weaning my 10-month old. That wonderful and successful transition actually occurred two weeks ago; finally, after almost four continuous years of a constant flow of being pregnant and nursing, both at the same time, then nursing again, my body is finally now my own. No, the weaning I am talking about here involves my 2YO who in watching me nurse my son, decided that when her little baby, "Kitty Kat" (a jumbo sized Hello Kitty) was hungry the ONLY practical solution was to also attempt to nurse.

The first day I saw it, I, indeed, did a double take. I had just finished nursing my baby boy and walked into my bedroom to find little-toddler-girl sitting on my bed and staring off at the wall with her shirt half up and her gargantuan Hello Kitty doll being pressed up against her chest. "What are you doing?" I asked thinking, surely this isn't what I think it is. "I nursing Kitty Kat!" She proudly declared ever so matter-of-factly and looked back at the wall to continue focusing on feeding.  "Oh," I said, and turned away so she wouldn't see my jaw drop as I tried to hold in a chuckle. This was an imitation I didn't expect.  I just assumed that little girls feed their babies a bottle, not thinking that she never saw us feed baby boy one.  Though, it was quite intriguing to me that of ALL the dolls she had to choose, she overlooked the authentic looking little baby girl and instead choses a white, hairy, not to mention LARGE, Hello Kitty.

And how do you respond to that? I facebooked about it in contemplating that very question.  One friend suggested I get her her own boppy pillow, and I even considered a nursing cover.  What better than to embrace my toddler imitating what really is a beautiful and natural and healthy gift we can offer our children.

But, all things are perfect in their own time. And today showed that it just might be time for weaning: Earlier, as Daddy was playing with 2YO in her princess tent, they were laughing and singing when she  abruptly pauses and I guess decided that it was time to nurse Kitty Kat.  Leave it to a daddy to be completely oblivious to the hunger cry of a baby--even if the cry was silently imagined by a toddler and the baby a stuffed cat! So, right in front of him, she lifts her shirt and shoves the white, plump animal up to her chest to "nurse." I'm in the bedroom getting ready when hubby comes in and tells me that it was a hilarious but awkward daddy moment in seeing your little baby girl attempt to nurse her cat.  And that's when the lightbulb went off for me, as Oprah would call it, an "Ah-ha" moment: It's time to teach little-toddler-girl how to wean Hello kitty. After all, how would this cute imitation look if it happened in the middle of Target, at church, dance class etc.

Thankfully, I have already bought 2YO girl a baby doll feeding kit for Christmas. All that's left is a short and sweet conversation about how now that Kitty Kat is older, she needs more nutrients from the bottle and even food, just like her baby brother.  It's ever so sweet that my 2-year-old is following in my footsteps--though I must admit, I never thought I'd have to teach my daughter to wean of all things, her stuffed cat. Maybe she and I can have a weaning tea-party to celebrate, during which we can both declare: Hello Kitty, Goodbye nursing.

Posted by Laura

December 18, 2009

Melodramommy Meets Urgent Care

As I write my first post, I'm already feeling the effects of the NyQuil I added to my own sippy cup tonight in efforts to combat what I think has been a lingering sinus infection. Here's a story for you of the drama from just today:

So, having my sleep disrupted the previous night from coughing, which made my voice sound a weird mix between an adolescent boy and my great aunt who smoked 30-years-one-too-many cigarettes, I determined that I would finally go to the doctor. The problem was that the weather forecast predicted a snowstorm; not the most enticing conditions to venture out to the doctor, keeping in mind I'd be lugging my 2-year-old girl and 10-month-old boy. Long story short, I find myself at an Urgent Care. Surely, it being a closer drive and not requiring an appointment would get me in and out in time to make it home before the snow. NOT SO.

I get there, lugging in my long double stroller with both canopies engaged to act like shields against any lingering viruses in the air.  I intentionally sit myself on the furthest side of the waiting room, as far away from the pale young woman whose frown greeted me at the door. As I sit there, waiting and waiting, all I can think is: Ms. Receptionist, can't you see I have a crying baby whom I am trying so hard to keep away from all these sick people. Can you call me into the room already? Then, an older looking Hispanic man goes into the restroom and begins a series of flushes that announces to all, stomach flu.  By the third flush, all I can think is GET OUT OF HERE. Six flushes. He walks out of the bathroom, feet dragging, and walks up to the water fountain, which is only 10 feet from me and the stroller, and rinses his mouth out in the water fountain! As I hear the man swishing the water in his mouth, all I can think is, PLEASE tell me this man isn't dancing his post-vomitose tongue in the water fountain where people are going to drink! And PLEASE tell me this isn't happening so close I can hear it!

As I'm listening to this man's clunk of spit hit the metal rim of the fountain, I am so horrified as the reality of this man's stomach virus germs are within reaching distance to both my baby and me!  The secret, silent, germaphobic alarm bells were sounding before I even walked in the room, you can imagine how they sound now!  For a moment, I envision and relive one of the most dramatic, scarring motherly memories that occurred only 7 months earlier when my non-potty-trained toddler endured SEVEN DAYs of vomit and diarrhea that made me give her showers, with yellow, elbow-high rubber gloves to rinse off the remnants and made me feel like I was driving a de-sterilization Nazi camp--keep in mind I also had a 7-week-old infant I was desperately trying to keep healthy and away from the threat. After that passed, we did have second bout of the stomach bug, one that only lasted two days a person, but went through my ENTIRE family. So, here a few months later, is it any wonder why I might be just a little overly sensitized to the possibility of a third GI manifestation!

So I wait for the man to take a few steps to my left, the door is on the right, and I gracelessly grab the stroller, quickly ask for the receptionist to return my health insurance card, and sprint out the door, pushing the stroller with one hand and retrieving the disinfectant wipes out from my purse with the other hand and had everything wiped down before I even reached my car. SAFETY! Upon returning home I washed my hands for so long that I actually have some dry skin cracks on my knuckles. I'm sorry but, sinus infection or not,  I'm not about to stay in the waiting room with my little baby boy when there is a man walking around with a stomach virus, spewing his germs in the fountain next to me.

The moral of this story for all you melodramommies out there:  just don't go to an Urgent care. Avoid it at all costs. And if you do go, wear a radioactive protective suit that covers head to toe, perhaps one with its own oxygen mask and tank, and wear that--don't forget to put one on baby too. But don't bring your baby and don't go unprotected.  And finally, if you should ever be that person who has the stomach bug and is in the urgent care, PLEASE don't be rinsing out your mouth in the public water fountain, ESPECIALLY if there is a woman with a baby next to you.  You think she doesn't hear, but in reality she is listening with every hair on her head standing, head tilting, eyes squinting, stomach pitting, heart palpitating, hands gripping the stroller, and it might take her all day and even blogging about it to get over what you just traumatized her with--that is IF she's lucky.

Well, I'm struggling to stay awake. The NyQuil has set in. Until next time.

Posted by Laura