United States of Motherhood: May 2011

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Motherhood: The Slim & Ever Slimmer Difference Between Teens & Tweens

My husband sent me this today:

Yes, this showed up on my husband's Facebook page today as recommended pages. Yes, these two pages were recommended by our kids. One guess which was liked by a fourteen year old boy and which was liked by an eleven year old girl? Heh!

Three years between them and as my husband says, a world of difference.

However, before he should get too secure in our little girl still being our little girl , I should say I know we have a whole world of hurt coming our way in the form of that one pretty little eleven year old.

I got the first hint today when my little 11 year old tried to leave the house today in footless semi-sheer gray pantyhose and tried to call them leggings.

Man was she moody when I marched her butt back upstairs for that missing item of clothing called a SKIRT!

Her father and I are soo screwed.

Hold me!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Marriage: In Which I Fire My Husband for Teaching My Kids To Play With Fire

What do you get when you have a Berkeley engineer husband who is experienced with explosives from his Army Combat Engineers stint?

Add too many hours of watching MythBusters?

Then add a gaggle of three overly curious kids?


Did you see that mess by the way? On the patio table, patio, and all over MY kitchen torch? Luckily, cleaned it up before the rain hit too hard. It now is clogging up my Dyson.

What ever the @#$%^ happened to, "Don't Try This At Home, kids?"

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Humor: People of Wal-Mart Song

Too funny not to share especially since I am such a fan of The People of Walmart site.

I do have to say these have to be special Wal-Marts because I have yet to see anything like these people in the Wal-Marts I have been in:

EMBED-People Of Walmart Song - Watch more free videos

CafeMom's The Stir: Devastated Mom SENT 154 Pics of Her Dead Baby

154 Posed Photos is Beyond Excessive

My latest story has me more than torn up.

On one hand, I think it was well-meant sentiment of a bereavement counselor or volunteer to take and give her the photos that they thought she might want in the future.

However, no means no.

No doesn't mean 154 unwanted, posed pics sent in the mail after developing them at Wal-greens.

Is this worth a lawsuit? I just don't know.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Giveaway: Sexy Strawberries & Chocolate, Baby

One of my favorite things about being a blogger is the fun stuff that ends up at my doorstep. Freebies, samples, and best yet, something like these:

Yes, a whole flat shipped and delivered to my doorstep of juicy, sweet, and shouting have your husband cover me in chocolate strawberries just in time for Easter brunch compliments of California Giant Berry Farm.

One quart down. Then we nibbled, snacked, and smoothied our way to the end of that flat. Did I mention a flat is a ginormous HUGE amount of strawberries?? We certainly got our vitamin C and juicy on that week:

I know you're jealous....

... And I hate to leave anyone of my readers jealous. Nope. Not fun. I am a share the wealth kind of lady.

So, in order to inspire you to get juicy this summer, one of my readers will get their very own strawberry delivery and a $25 Gift Certificate to Academy.com to get all sports and outdoorsy when they tell me how they would use such a berry bounty! See rules below.

Need some inspiration?

Drawing Now Closed
5 Ways to Enter Rules:

1. Leave a comment on this blog on what you would do with your strawberries with email address or twitter name or whatever way you wish to be contacted included. No duplicate comments. Additional bonus entry: Leave a comment on my new review blog United States of Motherhood Reviews. (Up to two entries daily)

2. Tweet the following: " Win fresh, juicy berries &gft card at United States of Motherhood http://tinyurl.com/3lwudf4 compliments of @scoutshonor @Californiagiant " Leave URL of tweet in comments. (Additional entry daily)

3. Follow United States of Motherhood on Facebook and leave separate comment here with FB profile name; If you already follow me, just let me know in separate comment as well which will count as an entry. (One additional entry)

4. Follow United States of Motherhood on Networked Blogs and leave separate comment here with profile name. If you already follow me, just let me know in separate comment as well. (One additional entry)

5. Make a StumbleUpon and/or Reddit review of this post and leave your StumbleUpon or Reddit name and the review URL in a comment(s). (Up to two entries)

Winner will be chosen at random by one of my kiddos from a hat on June 2nd and notified via email or contact method provided. You will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. Must be a US resident to enter.

Good luck!!

Images via by -mrsraggle-, scoutshonor, by thebittenword.com , VeganWarrior, Polkaroo, & Girl Interrupted Eating

Disclosure: I was not paid to write this post. I was given strawberries and was asked to review if I liked them. Of course, I did! They're strawberries, people!!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Shut Up, James is the TRUE 2011 AMERICAL IDOL

Are you even watching American Idol tonight? I sit here in a Seattle Starbucks and am decidedly unenthused about watching tonight.

I mean I like Alaina and Scotty, and at least they aren't Fantasia, but this is the real 2011 American Idol:

James, you were cheated.

This guy is also my American Idol:

Adam, you were robbed.

And finally, this guy:

Chris, you were jilted.

Chris, Adam, and now James? This is soooo wrong! Boo! So who do you think should have won?

Motherhood: The Art of Deflecting Compliments

I am not really good at tooting my own horn. I am, however, great at pointing out my flaws.

In fact, I can't even accept a compliment with grace. You compliment my hair color? I tell you it's not my real color or it's "enhanced" or frizzy...

You tell me I look great with the 5 lbs I lost?

I tell you I have 60 to go and am muffin top queen...

You tell me you like my new Facebook profile pic? I tell you it's all filters and editing.

You tell me I did a great job leading this committee or that? I say it was really this person or that person that made it all possible. Or I tell you that I could have done better and then proceed to examine in minutiae what went wrong...aloud.

Yes, compliments make me feel flustered and nervous.


I know it's ridiculous. I am shaking my head at myself as I write. What the @#*$ is wrong with me?

I had a connection today with blogger Not Mommy of the Year with a post on the same issues. She wondered what effect we have on our daughters. It started me thinking and my friends?

I really didn't like what I realized.

My daughter is running for a student body office at her middle school. As we took down her posters at the end of the election, kids all over campus approached her and told her that her speech was great and that they voted for her.

Each time?

She put her head down, embarrassed, shy, eyes downcast, and mumbling something. She is not typically a shy girl. Only when it comes to compliments. At the time, I told her she needed to thank them. Aloud. She protested she did.

I realized, at this young age, she is a mini-me.

Somehow, somewhere along the way I developed this ingrained modesty that does allow me to confidently accept compliments. This, among many reasons, was why I kept my blog a secret from family and friends for years. Each time I have someone mention it, almost always positively, I am horrified and panicked.

What could they possibly like about this blog?

Silly. Stupid. Ridiculous. Those are all the next thoughts that go through my mind as I brush off yet another compliment because I feel I am not worthy of it. See, still doing it.

What is it about women like me that we can't just accept the self-esteem boost? Can't just accept the compliment at face value? Can't just smile and say thank you?

Worse? I've passed it on to my baby girl.

The good news is that I am working on this trait. Over the past few years, I've been slowly revealing my blog to friends and family . It's a risk. We all know my family for the most part didn't and still doesn't approve. Nope.

But, so many friends have been amazingly supportive and I need to learn to thank them for their high fives. Someone yesterday even nominated my blog for Top 25 Political Mom Blogs.

My first inclination was to say, I am sure I wouldn't get enough votes to even place, but seriously?

Screw that Charlie Brown attitude. Vote for me??

Instead, whoever you are that nominated me?

Thank you from the very bottom of my heart. You made me smile and I am ever so appreciative.

~ Scout

Friday, May 20, 2011

Weight Loss: Pitchforks & Fat Taxes...Who's next?

My latest on The Stir:

So should the overweight and poor be taxed?

Are we going to fine people who use tanning beds or do not use sunscreen? It's such a slippery slope!!
I would think fining them would only force them to make worse food choices. Your thoughts?

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Motherhood: Calvin and Li'l Man Sitting in a Tree

My 3rd grader asked me a few days ago, after being asked to do some apparently egregious chores such as cleaning up after himself and making his bed, if he could "secede" from our family?

Yes, secede. 

First of all, where does a nine year-old get this stuff? 

I am certain secede was not in my vernacular at age nine. Was it in yours?

Then I had an ah-haaa moment! 

A few months back the kids were supposed to dress up as their favorite book character.

Luckily, we came up with a costume when we remembered the assignment--about 30 minutes before school started.

Yes bad mom. Correction: Bad, but fast thinking mom and kid #3!

I remember eldest being particularly lippy around 3rd grade....and voraciously reading all his father's Calvin and Hobbes books.


Yes, we have reached the Calvin years!!  Help!!

 I'm screwed, aren't I?


Monday, May 16, 2011

Life: I'm All Stabby for You, Panda Express, With Love & Whittled Chopsticks

Dear Panda Express Employee I did business with yesterday after the @#$%^ forever long swim meet my kids love to inflict on me...

...and for that matter all begrudged employees of the ridiculously bad for my family drive-thru establishments we occasionally frequent due to poor planning and lack of time on my part-- not because we actually like how obese you make us all,

Let's be clear. If you forget to give me:

  • my receipt

  • my miserly child size ice waters you roll your eyes at with a huge family sized order--sooo sorry we don't want your sugary beverages!!

  • And oh yes, my CREDIT CARD

Yes, my credit card...I might just stab you with my chopsticks through the Panda Express drive-thru window and shoot straw darts your way next time.

Or at least remind you....

Yes, I'd like my waters now as you shoo me off down the queue.

Yes, I'd like my credit card now as you shoo me off down the queue

Yes, I'd like some plates and napkins for my family order of Beijing Beef that is going to inflame my heart, Orange Chicken that will raise my cholesterol 20 points in one hour, and 2 vats of oily Chow Mein that will undo the 15 miles I walked last week in one bite.

....Or at least I WOULD stab you with chopsticks if YOU ACTUALLY GAVE ME SOME AS REQUESTED!!

Most sincerely,

Scout's Honor

(Otherwise known as the harried lady giving you the stink eye as you walked away with her credit card and now will suspiciously check her credit card statements at all too frequent intervals to make sure you didn't charge a new butt floss thong from VS on her account while she waited for her Kobari Beef)

PS Don't worry, Panda Bears! My thighs still heart you even if my heart and boiling brain do not.

Images via
ABMJG, geekmojo, Jeff the Trojan/Flickr

Friday, May 13, 2011

Ohh the Hypocrisy: Osama bin Laden and Porn

Isn't it ironic that the man who hid behind morality and religion to mastermind 9-11 and the murder of thousands of innocent men, women, and children, was a big fat hypocrite?

Yes, hypocrite.

Reuters reports they found a HUGE collection of porn in Osama bin Laden's hideout compound.


...And before we blame it on his guards, or better yet the women (don't they always blame the women), the pornographic material was found in a wooden box in bin Laden's bedroom. And yes, it included videos.

Three other U.S. officials familiar with evidence gathered during investigations of other Islamic militants said the discovery of pornography is not uncommon in such cases."

So while he castigated the Western world for their immorality, there he was watching Debby Does Dallas while drinking his coca-cola and growing pot.

What's the old saying that he who protests the loudest, did the deed? Indeed.

Image By zer(o_0)ne via Flickr

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Life:Kate "Katerella" Middleton & Her Prince Charming

Hmmm....I knew something look familiar about that wedding. Heh!

Many thanks to my friend at Top Shelf Thinks for sending it my way through Facebook!

PS Yes, I know it's shopped. Cindy's my favorite princess, but you gotta admit you did a double take, eh?

CafeMom's The Stir: Tweens, Cyberstalking & Facebook

My latest post on The stir: Damned if you do and damned if you don't. Would you let your tween have a Facebook account?


Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Motherhood: How a Teen with Karma on his Side Can Make a Mom Feel Worthless in Less Than 10 Seconds

Karma is a b#$% bitch...and that bitch finally caught up with me this week-end.

I admit, I used to call my mom, mother of six kids and over twenty foster kids as well as running an at-home day care center, just a mom.

Yes, that was emphasis on the just in case you didn't catch it.

When I first met my future mother-in-law, I remember she asked me what my mom did. I clearly recall mentioning then, as a Berkeley college student with high-faluting ideas of high profile law careers and nannies, that she was "just a house wife" and she "didn't work."

Yes, snotty little slag I was in my pre-children days.

Fast forward to last Sunday evening. Instead of the typical brunch in bed, we delayed Mother's day until my oh-so-fabulous teenage son came home in the afternoon from a swim camp. I happily held celebrations until then because he had expressed regret about missing it.

In retrospect, I have come to believe it was more regret about missing brunch than being involved with celebrating his mom.

While we waited, Li'l Man became confused why my husband wasn't making the traditional brunch and we weren't opening presents. He had a present that he'd been hiding for days in his hot little hands. It had required an extra trip to school where he threw it in the back and I promised not to look.

We reminded him that we were holding mom celebrations until his older brother got back from his PNS swimming camp. He seemed unconvinced, so CG serenaded me with Wii guitar to celebrate. Li'l Man was still not convinced, but was suitably distracted and went to play Wii.

Finally, Eldest home, we ate dinner at Thai...my choice! The teen? He was not pleased. In fact, his mood was foul because he hadn't slept well after sharing a bed with a fellow teammate and then had been subjected to more intense than usual work outs.

He said that he had {gasp} actually woken up that morning and "was STILL tired."

I might have snarkily mentioned I couldn't remember the last time I woke up when I was well rested. This was all the opening my little shit teenage wonder needed...

...{snarl} And this is where that bitch got me. Karma being the bitch--not my nasty-attitude, over-tired kiddo:

Eldest [Dripping with attitude only a 14 yr old can summon]:

"So? It's not as if you work anyways. You do nothing for 10 hours a day."

Seriously, oh yes he did. That's the way it went down on Mother's day.

Grappling for composure after being blind-sided and instead of ripping off his head, suddenly I was my mom. Hurt. Dazed. Blinking back tears. Shazaam...Take that self-esteem. Instead of blowing it off, I started seriously justifying my day.
Me: " Wait ten hours? [Doing math] Ten hours?! That laptop you think I play on? It's called my blog. My writing paid for that camp to which you just went. I clean. I write. I pick you up to school. I will spend six hours tomorrow alone taking you kids to swimming."

Eldest: "Yeah, but that's when we get home. You don't do anything during the day."

CG jumped in and gamely mentioned I take care of their dog and cat and clean up the mess they made, but I was already tuned out. Lame.


I went blank. I reviewed the current state of disaster in our home and over flowing laundry and even said-teen's current less than satisfactory grades and felt completely and utterly worthless as a mom and a failure as a "housewife" on Mother's day of all days.

I then blew it off, but it hurt, my friends, but it hurt. Karma is one rough opponent. Happy @#$* Mother's day, eh?

By the way, the teen's present to me was not a homemade card or thoughtful gift funded by their dad as in past years or even a favorite book re-gifted that he thought I might like. Nope. I got a Happy Mother's day text from his tween sister and him and a water hose nozzle from the hubs.

So not joking...

I admit with the current state of our finances, I've said no gifts in the past. However @#$%^ garden nozzles and texts? Those were pretty much not the best way to make one feel special especially since I had out hose nozzles prominently on the island that I had purchased from Costco weeks ago.

Karma again? I am no better for forgetting Mother's day was last Sunday. Isn't Mother's day always on May 15th??? So there I was sending mother and mother-in-law last minute emails with Amazon gift cards. Karma? Yep, I am a douche nozzle who deserved her water nozzle.

Funny enough their swim coach texted all the kids that day to be "nice to their mothers." My daughter texted back, "Why?" Good for him, he told her not to be a "little jerk." I thought it was pretty amusing at the time since I knew they were both joking.

Unfortunately, my son didn't take his advice and it's been hanging with me for days. Feeling pretty much like a failure. I have been snippily pointing out when I do things for him.

Me: "Oh, I just finished registering you for the Idaho meet...when I do nothing during the day. "

Me: "Here's a freshly made chicken pasta salad chock full of the veggies the swim camp said you needed and made lovingly by me for your snack before swim practice...yes, made when I do nothing while you are at school."

Me: "You need some cash in my wallet for what? Oh, sorry I was going to buy groceries while I did nothing."

I know really big of me. Totally insecure, but just wait until next time he misses his bus and wants a ride to school or runs out of clean socks...

I hate you, karma!

My friends, thank you for letting me whine get that off my chest. I feel much better now! Sigh... Thank bejesus Li'l Man saved my day with the best little water color art, bookmark with my favorite flower thoughtfully cut/pasted on it, and the best hand made card ever. The card even said thank you for making money. Yep, apparently he doesn't think I laze around all day, eating bon-bons. Yep, he's a keeper!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mother's Day 2011

Happy Mother's day to all you mommies, moms, mothers, mamas, and soon to be mums!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

CafeMom's The Stir: Neighbor's Sex Fetish Ruins Man's Home Decor

Yep, this is my latest post at CafeMom's The Stir: I can just hear my kids now, "Mommy, why is neighbor Bob spanking neighbor Bob's friend?" Ugh!

Scout’s Honor

Friday, May 6, 2011

Awesome Sauce: My Improvised Recipe For Chocolate Poppyseed Banana Bundt Bread

You know when life gives you little kicks and you give 'em kickstands?

This recipe was a kickstand. I am generally not a food blogger, but when a girl loves her food, she needs to share that joy.

My friends, there are three types of cooks. Three types go to make a recipe, see that they are lacking ingredients and...

  1. Grab their keys and get thee to the grocery store
  2. Give up or make something else
  3. Improvise

I am the improviser. I see curry for Chinese five spice. I see fish for chicken. I see tortilla for cheese. And yes, I usually don't figure this out until half the ingredients are in the bowl. So then? Yes, I see mayo as eggs. Once I start amending, it's hard to stop.

Last week, I went to make my standard banana bread I bake and ended up going so crazy the recipe is unrecognizable. Usually, much to my kids dismay, this has only a 50-50 chance of ending well. I say you've got to celebrate success when you can. I am not even truly a banana bread person, but this made me a believer.

I got lucky that day and oh, mama, this was joy:

We have a rule in this house. If it was improvised and really yummy, it can never be created again. Lucky for me, I started to take notes in hope.

We won't discuss how I used to quite snottily tell CG that chocolate does not go in banana bread. Nope, so not going there. Heh!

Let's just say a certain somebody was right and a certain somebody who is very, very, very rarely, almost never, ever wrong was...well slightly mistaken.

1 cup softened butter
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
6 tbsp buttermilk
3/4 cup mayonnaise
5-6 medium very ripe bananas

2 cups granulated sugar
2 cups flour
2 tbsp ground flaxseed
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp poppy seed
1/2 tsp baking powder

non-stick spray

1-2 cups chocolate chips
1/4 cup powdered sugar
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Mix all wet ingredients butter through mayo in bowl. Fold in bananas.

In separate bowl, mix dry ingredients granulated sugar through baking powder. Make well in dry flour mixture. Add wet banana mixture and slowly fold together just until combined. Do not overmix.

Spray bundt pan generously and thoroughly with non-stick spray like Pam.

Pour in batter until pan is 2/3 full. Take extra batter and put in cupcake cups for mini banana muffins. Add chocolate chips in even layer to top of cake.

They will tend to sink as they bake into a molten chocolate core.

Bake for 60 minutes or until wooden toothpick comes out clean. Bake mini banana muffins at 300 degrees for 18-20 minutes.

Place pan on wire rack and let stand in pan until cool. Put large plate/platter on top of pan, invert, and slowly jiggly pan until cake loosens. Dust with powder sugar.

Eat warm with molten chocolate core, but the cake is really, really better the second day. That's where the mini banana breads come in...to help you resist eating the whole cake until the second day with all the moisture is evenly distributed. Day one is good, but day two is amazing!!

Resist I tell you!!

The second day, I promise is even better. So worth the wait to have a thick, moist slab waiting for you for breakfast on a warm spring day!

Nom, nom, nom!

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