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Appreciating Your Husband

by Christy on July 15, 2009
category: Humor/Random,Husbands and Dads,Inspiration,Uncategorized

thankyoudarling My husband recently got laid off from his job due to the recession and has been home full time for about two weeks.  As negative as his job loss may seem, it’s been a blessing to me at this point in time.  I have been dealing with some health problems that have kept me in bed and unable to do my daily activities, including chasing after our two kids.  I have been blessed that my husband has been stepping up to the plate in a big way, even more than usual.  It got me to thinking about how much I underappreciate him on a regular basis.

Often times I get into the mindset of “I do so much around here and no one seems to appreciate it” and I forget about all that my husband does without expecting my praise or any reward.  Even before he was laid off, he spent a ton of time with the kids and did baths everynight.  He always takes out the trash and brings in the heavy things from the car after big shopping trips.  Little things like those go unappreciated so often that I have begun to take him for granted.  I have come up with a few ideas of ways I can show my appreciation for him and thought I’d share.  (Of course, being the ever loving and supportive husband he is, he will probably read this before you all do and will know the little acts of kindness before they are done!)

  • Write him a little note telling him how much I love him and leave it in his car (I do this every now and then when I can sneak out to the car without him knowing)
  • Give him an unprompted back rub
  • Make his favorite dinner without asking him beforehand what he wants to eat that night 
  • Do the kids’ bath one night to give him a break
  • Brag about him to my friends
  • Make him his favorite cookies and not eat any myself

I think the best thing I can do to show him my true appreciation for all that he is and does is just to tell him and stop complaining when I don’t feel appreciated.  I think he’ll like the last one best of all!

What kinds of little things do you do for your husband when you want to show him your appreciation?  What are some ways you wish he would show you his appreciation for you?

Photo Courtesy of KayVee.INC

Sympathy Morning Sickness

by Amelia on April 16, 2009
category: Husbands and Dads,Pregnancy

front_color-black We recently found out that we are expecting baby #4 in December.  When we found out we were pregnant my husband, Jon, started feeling a little nausea if he didn’t eat every few hours.  Or he would just feel like he needed to eat.  Like his stomach needed something more–even though he just ate.  And he started craving things that have sustenance–like cheeseburgers, not carrots.  He describes it as his stomach gets tight and he feels like he might throw up if he doesn’t eat something.  He feels grumpy and just wants to eat.  And he has been craving more sweets.  He is more of a salt guy than a sweets guy so that is a new symptom too.

When he starts telling me all this I can’t help but laugh!  I have felt that way with the last 3 pregnancies!  Yes, I know what it is like to HAVE to eat every few hours or face the porcelain god.  Yes, I know that protein/cheeseburgers are more filling and help you feel better for longer when you are dealing with morning sickness and that the idea of eating veggies and couscous for dinner may not sound appealing.  Yes, I know what it is like to feel like you don’t care what someone is saying because all you can think about is what you need to be putting in your stomach so you don’t feel like you are going to toss your cookies.

We decided that he is experiencing Sympathy Morning Sickness.  And I say, “I’m so thankful!”  Nausea debilitates me.  I have a hard time NOT throwing up and once I start it is hard to stop.  I don’t feel like I have time to figure to mess with what we call “inconvenience sickness”. I have way too much other stuff to do–shuffle 2 kids back and forth from school, do laundry for 5 people, cook meals, keep the house in a somewhat reasonable living condition, and oh yeah, start packing/selling/decluttering our stuff for a move to England later this summer! I digress. Now, truth be told, I am only 6 weeks along and I usually don’t start getting heavy nausea until week 7.  We will see how this whole scene plays out.  Perhaps it will come full force in the next week.  Or maybe, just maybe, he’ll have it the whole time.

Many people have reported similar things. I mentioned it in my birth class on Sunday night and one of my couples said the same thing happened to them.  I found this website where women shared their stories about sympathy morning sickness/pregnancy pains.  Now it is fun to ask couples with kids if they ever experienced that same thing.

So, what about you?  Did your husband experience sympathy morning sickness?  Weight gain? Pregnancy pains? C’mon! Share your stories!

I found that t-shirt from Cafe Press. I thought it was pretty cute :) .

My Experience As A (Temporary) Single Parent: Guest Post from Trina

by Dawn on March 6, 2009
category: Guest Posts,Husbands and Dads,Inspiration

trina-1.jpg  March is a big month for your contributors at The Mom Crowd: Amanda, our founder, just had her second child, and McKenna is going to Eastern Europe for the first time to meet her new daughter (for the first time!)  When Amanda asked for guest posters to step in and share their wisdom, the response was phenomenal.  Keep coming back to The Mom Crowd every day for fabulous information, tips, stories, and inspiration!

Trina is a busy married (but single!) parent:  she takes care of her two year old and her beagle Gidgett, and gives support to her now-overseas husband.  After all that, she still has time to read her favorite blog, The Mom Crowd.

Once upon a time, I got married, had a rough-but-good pregnancy, experienced beautiful labor and welcomed a little girl into the world with my husband of 2 years.  We had plans of watching her grow together.  My husband could not wait to hold his little girl.  Fast forward 16 months:  I am a single mom.  No, I did not get divorced.  My husband in the United States Air Force and is currently deployed for a year in the war.  Gone are the days of “Honey, can you please change the baby?” and “I need a free day – can you watch her?”

When my husband left for the war in August, our daughter had just turned 18 months old.  At the time, I had no idea how much work it actually was being a Single Parent.  There are many nights where I crawl into bed un-showered and in the same clothes from the day before. To say the least, it’s been an interesting adventure for my daughter and me. 

My favorite single parent moment (when it finally hit me I was all alone) was when my daughter was very sick with a stomach flu.  She has tendency to always throw up on me.   This time, she spewed all over me, herself, the dog and anything else in her way.  After picking the vomit out of my eyes so I could see, I headed to the shower, still dressed, with baby in arms.  We stood under the running water until no trace of the sickness remained.  

Remembering all of my many single mom stories makes me laugh now.  I also feel blessed to have this special time with my daughter.  This might sounds selfish, but I will never have this alone time with her again.  It has made our relationship stronger.  My single-mom days have also made me a better mother for my daughter and for any other child we have in the future.

It has now been 6 ½ months since my husband was deployed, and life is going trina-2.jpg well. The holidays have passed, and Daddy will soon be home for his R&R.  He gets to be home for 14 days and then back to war for another 7 months.  Though we can’t wait to see him, my biggest concern will be fitting him back into our life and routine.  My daughter and I have a schedule and do our own thing.  It has been a long time since I have had to take into consideration what my other half might have planned!  Since this is such a short trip, I am considering letting the schedule go (a little) and just go with the flow.  I am also aware that Daddy does not understand how much work at 2 year old is! 

Through this experience, I have developed a new respect for all single parents. No matter what your situation is, you deserve an award for all you do for your children.  Hang in there!

Are you a single parent?  What kinds of challenges do you face?  What strategies have you found to help you get through your days?  How do you strive to keep a positive outlook?

Are You a Helicopter or a Drill Sargeant? Part 1

According to Wikipedia, a Helicopter Parent is someone who:

 pays extremely close attention to his or her child’s or children’s experiences and problems, particularly at educational institutions. These parents rush to prevent any harm or failure from befalling them and will not let them learn from their own mistakes, sometimes even contrary to the children’s wishes. They are so named because, like helicopters, they hover closely overhead, rarely out of reach, whether their children need them or not.”


 Some practical examples of being a helicopter parent are:

  • Driving your child to school if he/she misses the bus images.jpeg
  • Taking your child’s homework up to school if he/she forgets it at home
  • Waking your child up every morning when they are old enough to use an alarm clock
  • Not allowing your child to fail at a project (finishing the project so it gets a good grade)
  • Giving your child more lunch money even though he spent it unwisely earlier in the week
  • Making excuses for the child why her homework wasn’t complete and begging the teacher to give the child another chance or a passing grade
  • Settling all normal childhood battles for the child

 Helicopter parents try to save their children from the hardships of the world and try too hard to make everything in the child’s life pain free and perfect. Helicopter parents love their children very much.  They don’t want to see their children sad or suffering and feel like helping them out is the loving thing to do. Unfortunately, the result of helicopter parenting is that children grow up without knowing how to be responsible (because mommy and daddy have been doing all the rescuing!) and believe that they are incapable of doing anything.  The children learn that they absolutely can’t make it in life without mommy and daddy. 


images-1.jpeg Drill Sergeant Parents believe that they can make their children do whatever the parent says to do. Drill Sergeant parenting incorporates threats and punishment in order to make the child do what the parent wants.  The parent wants all the control and believes that the more control he/she has, the more likely the child is to obey. Unfortunately, there are many things you cannot “make” a child do.  These parents have children who don’t really learn how to make good decisions—they only learn how to avoid getting in trouble or get a reward.  Children of drill sergeants have a difficult time thinking for themselves because their parents do all the thinking for them. 


Some practical examples of being a drill sergeant are:

  • Barking orders to clean up toys, bedrooms etc.
  • Yelling—especially at bedtime when the children aren’t going to bed like they are supposed to.
  • Continuous power struggles (homework, chores, talking back)

Drill Sergeants love their children too.  They just believe that they can make their children do what they want by bossing them around.  Unfortunately, the downfalls of drill sergeant parenting is communicating to the child that he/she can’t think for him/herself and that he/she isn’t capable of making it in life either. 

Does any of this sound familiar to you?  It is possible to be a helicopter to one child and a drill sergeant to a different child in your family.  I have recently discovered this myself.  I have been more of a drill sergeant to my oldest son-who by the way only digs his heels into the ground more when I try to boss him around.  And I am much more of a helicopter to my second child.  He is 4 and fully capable of putting on his own shoes and coat but there I am doing it for him because he starts whining that he “just can’t do it by himself.” So basically, I am a recovering helicopter drill sergeant. 

I have been taking a class called Love And Logic that has been marvelous and revolutionary in my relationship with my children!  Love and Logic was created by Jim Fay, Foster Cline, M.D. and Charles Fay, Ph.D.  They have several books available as well as some seminars you can go to.  There are certified Love and Logic teachers available all over the country who teach the course.

The goal of Love and Logic is to teach parents how to be Consultants to their children.  Consultant parents communicate to their children,  “You’d best do your own thinking because the quality of your life has a lot to do with your decisions.” Consultant parents don’t tell their kids what to do.  (Mind blowing-I tell you!) Consultants are excited about the opportunities that come along in life where children make mistakes—because it is an opportunity for the child to learn (not be rescued!).  Consultant parents are always there to give advice (not lectures!) but let their children make their own decisions and fail or succeed. 

121.gif Love and Logic is practical for toddlers through teenagers.  The techniques work and I am going save some of my own successes for another post next week.   They have books that help with teenstoddler-kindergarten, even for a classroom setting. Their website has some video clips that will help you get a taste of their style.  It won’t give you too much information though—just enough to make you ask for more. 


So, have you ever heard of Love and Logic?  Do you know anyone that does Love and Logic with their kids?  Are you a helicopter, drill sergeant, or consultant? Sound intriguing? 

7 Ways To Show Your Family You Love Them

by Amanda on November 17, 2008
category: Finances,Husbands and Dads,Practical Tips

flower_arrangementbouquet.jpg We all show our family that we love them in different ways. Another way that you can show your love for them is to show them that you care about them even after you are gone. The hard reality is that we are all going to leave this earth and we don’t know when. I have a friend whose husband unexpectedly passed when they were 27 years old and she had 3 month old twins to take care of. It doesn’t matter what stage of life you are in, you need to be prepared.

Each person makes their own decision how to prepare for the end from an emotional and spiritual aspect, but here are some practical steps to be prepared from a financial and administrative perspective.

1. Have a will.

Even if you don’t think you have a lot of assets, you need to have a will because you don’t want the State to dictate what happens to your property after you are gone. You have the opportunity now to take that responsibility. It will save your family a lot of time and grief knowing your wishes, because getting an estate in order after someone has passed can take a lot of time.  You may be surprised by how many possessions you own after completing a will.

It is good to discuss whom will care for your children if something should happen to both parents. It is certainly a hard decision and there are many factors to consider. I know one couple who does not tell anyone who the “godparents” are, because it isn’t a family member and they don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. This is one decision I DO NOT want left up to the State’s probate laws.

Myth: I have to go through a lawyer to get a will.

Fact: Right now you can download a state specific will from USLegalForms.com for $20. Then all you have to do is fill it out and have it notarized.

2. Have Term Life Insurance.

If someone depends on your income then it is best to take out a policy for 8 – 10 times your income. Then once the life insurance money has been issued, your family can invest the money in a good growth stock mutual fund and if it earns at least a 10% return, you can live off of the interest. Then the lost income is replaced.  Since I am a Stay at Home Mom, this gives me an enormous amount of peace knowing that I will be okay for money if something should happen to my husband.

For Stay at Home Moms a policy should be for about $250,000 to $400,000, because a mom’s work is valued at about $40,000 a year. (Although, it feels like it should be more!) The idea is that if something happens to the mother, then the father can afford a Nanny or Child Care while he continues to working.

Don’t assume you have life insurance through your work. Find out the details of any life insurance plan you or your spouse has through work.

Term Life Insurance is not that expensive. You can go to ZanderIns.com for a quote. Depending on your age and how much coverage you want it can be $30 to $55 a month.

Myth: Whole Life Insurance is a great idea, because I can invest my money at the same time.
Fact:  The truth is that the return on investments in a whole life policy are horrible and it is better to put that money in a mutual fund. Also, there is not a guarantee that your beneficiaries will receive the savings upon your death. For more information about Whole Life Insurance go here.

3. Make plans for your estate.

Making a will and planning for your estate go hand in hand.  Estate planning will allow you to decide who will get your house, cars, or anything else you want. Also, if you give your house as an inheritance to your kids, then you can avoid a high rate of gift tax. On daveramsey.com “The federal government allows someone to die and leave in their estate $2 million without any estate taxes. An individual can only give another individual $12,000 before getting gift-taxed out the ear unless they claim it as part of their estate before they die.”  You can read more about this here under the question “Is Inheritance The Way To Go?”

The estate planning process is also where you will set up any trusts that you want to leave for your kids. You can even make stipulations on whatever specific areas you want. You can specify the age that they get it and how much or that it be used to pay for college.

Myth: Estate planning is only for rich people.
Fact:  The truth is that you may be surprised by how much you have. You need to make plans for the term life insurance money or if you own a home.


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