How to Take Easy Newborn Photos



Bringing home a new baby is synonymous with stress. You have to feed it, clothe it, love it – and now you also have to schedule a professional photo shoot. These precious photo sessions start around 300-500 dollars, and you only have the first two weeks of your unpaid maternity leave to take them.

So instead of schlepping your newborn out when all you want to do is sleep, or have a stranger come over when both you and your home are at your worst, here’s a much easier and economical solution.

First dream up your perfect newborn photos. The options are limitless. Maybe for you it’s baby in a frog pose.


“Looks can be decieving..” by Brandie  available at under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.0. Full terms at

Or baby in a nest.

untitled.pngImage via Pixabay

How about baby in a net?

baby in net“just hanging out!” by Ruby Lane Photography available at under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.0. Full terms at

Next, pick a baby that kind of looks like yours. Print, frame, and hang a photo of that baby in your entryway.

Now watch as your flood of new-baby visitors gush over your super creative theme, ask which Etsy vendor did your hat, and comment that your baby looks just like you did when you were born. If one of your relatives is onto something, just say “it’s unbelievable how their looks change so quickly.”

Chances are no one will ever know it’s not really your kid, and you’ve just saved yourself loads of cash and stress.

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Wonder what it’s like to bring home a newborn baby? Play The New Parent Game!

The New Parent Game

Thinking about having kids, or have one on the way and want to know what taking care of a newborn is really like? Find out by playing The New Parent Game.


Setting up:
Designate one player as the newborn’s primary caretaker (we’ll call her “mom.”)
Set the timer to go off every 2.5 hours throughout the day and night.

How to play:
Assume regular daily responsibilities. When the timer goes off every 2.5 hours, stop whatever you are doing. If you are sleeping, wake up. Now “care for the baby” for 45 minutes. See “Special Rules” below to learn how to care for the baby.

After 45 minutes, reset the stopwatch to go off in another 2.5 hours and repeat for three months.

Special Rules for Mom:
While you “care for the baby” you must remain awake. You may not do anything that you “need” to do (like eating) and you may not do anything that you may “want” to do—like maintaining your personal hygiene.

Because you are on maternity leave,  you must pitch in by taking care of the home. Take on additional duties such as cooking, laundry, etc…

Wildcard– Each morning, roll the dice. This is the number of times you will not be able to soothe your baby while you are caring for them. You must care for the child for two consecutive 45 minute sessions with no break in between.

After six weeks you may leave the house for your postpartum exam. You will then get the all-clear to resume sexual relations, after which you must add intercourse to your routine.

Special Rules for Dad:
While you care for the baby you may fall asleep or let the baby sleep, which will ruin any schedule mom may have instituted.

You may leave the house for the entire day while you go to work.

During the evening, you may ask mom to “quiet the baby” so that you can get a full night’s sleep to prepare for work the following day.

Optional– You may choose to do one nice thing a day such as changing a diaper or feeding the baby. If those tasks are too difficult, you may simply hold the child or supervise it while it is propped up.

Dad does not have a wildcard.

Make sure you have time for video games, golf, and other pleasures.

Have any rules you’d like to add? Leave a comment!

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The Ultimate Pregnancy Announcement!

Some people use photos to announce their pregnancy. Others make videos. And if you’re Tamera Mowry-Housley, you sell your announcement to a pregnancy test company.

The Sister, Sister star just told the world about baby number two with this Tweet endorsing Clearblue pregnancy tests:

pregnancy test

I hope that by the time I’m pregnant with my second kid I’ll be famous enough to sell my Tweets too. But the last time around I didn’t use a brand name test like Clearblue or First Response — I used a pregnancy test from the Dollar Tree.

Just in case any sponsors would like to purchase my future announcement waaaaaaaayyyyy in advance, I prepared a Tweet:

#DollarTreePregnancyTestConfirmed with baby #2! Love New Choice Pregnancy Test. Hope it’s accurate! It’s ok if it’s not, because I got 7 for the price of one! #spon

Dollar Tree Pregnancy Test

I hope the Dollar Tree has a big advertising budget because if there ever is a baby #2 I’ll be aiming high. Let’s get this deal in writing before sperm meets egg.

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37 Thoughts While Trying Zumba at the Gym

1. Wow this is so fun!
2. I should bring my friends with me next time.
3. That salsa class I took in college is totally paying off.

Beyonce Dancing

Image credit  FunnyorDie.







4. OMG the instructor’s tank top is so cute.
5.  I need a new outfit for the gym.
6. Capris or yoga pants…
7. Is this still the warm up?
8. I am doing this every week.
9. Umm why do guys keep looking in here?
10. Mental note — next time stand away from the door.
11. Ok a little less booty shaking until I catch my breath.
12. Side. Pain.
13. I wonder if anyone here knows CPR.
14. Gasp. Gasp. Gasp.
15. I’m going to die.
16. Maybe if I just move my arms it’ll still look like I’m dancing.
17. How do these old ladies keep up?

old ladies dancing

Image credit









18. Ok is this the cool down?
19. No.
20. How many water breaks can I take before it starts looking weird?
21. Dammit I drank it all.
22. You seriously want us to break into pairs? What is this, math class?
23. Eww my partner’s sweat is on my arm.
24. Why is everyone facing me?
25. Screw these pivot turns.
27. Maybe if I just…. move my feet…. it’ll look like I’m still participating.
28. How rude is it if I just leave?

Run away

Image credit










29. The instructor is so nice.
30. I should try harder.
31. Oh no she’s coming near me.
32. Go away! Go away!
33. Am I so bad that I look like I need extra help??
34. If I stop looking at myself in the mirror I’ll feel less like a jackass.
35. I wish I had moves like that chic up front.
36. Actually I hate her.
37.  I think I might really die.

Dance Class Fall

Image credit Funny or Die.

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Sneakers Gone Crazy: An attempt to buy normal footwear for adults


For my husband’s birthday I buy him the same two things every year—a baseball cap and a pair of sneakers. Sometimes I skip a few years on the sneakers, but this year he ruined his one decent pair doing yard work. After he started wearing his Ugg slippers to restaurants and doctor’s appointments, I knew it was time to buy him sneakers again.

So for his 30th, we made a family trip to the mall to get the hat and shoe combo. With a borderline contented toddler, we stuck to the yearly routine. First I bought the overpriced hat at Lids, and then we went to the athletic store to get him Pumas.

That’s when I realized I must have skipped out on the sneakers for more birthdays than I thought. Looking around Finish Line, I saw that we had gone to fashion sleep years ago, and had just been jerked awake by extreme shades of orange.

Everything around us was neon and loud and gimmicky. It was like they used a computer to create every possible variation of mesh, Velcro and high tops, and then spat it onto the shelves. The whole store catered to high school kids – not to anyone pushing anything in a stroller.

extreme mens shoes

They didn’t even sell Pumas.

After wheeling our kid through every shoe store in the mall, and it’s a big mall, my husband felt dejected. Then he said the unthinkable,

“I should just get a pair of New Balance’s.”

It was like the mall stopped. You want to wear what?? I wasn’t ready to live with him wearing the gateway shoe to orthopedics. He just turned 30, not 50. We had some time.

After our disappointing shopping trip, I went on a private mission to get him age-appropriate sneakers. Anything to avoid the 609’s. (Just Google “Old Man Shoes” and you’ll find them.) I went everywhere: Dicks Sporting Goods, Kohl’s, Bobs. They all confirmed that we were old.

Our journey culminated with a last-ditch family trip to some new and trendy outdoor outlets. And it was raining. And we took daddy’s car so we didn’t have the good stroller with the big canopy.

First we made a sobering stop at the Nike Outlet where we found sneakers featuring our galaxy.

Nike Zoom

Then we went to the Puma store. That’s where we found them—black sneakers that match everything, hide dirt, have arch support, and aren’t mesh so you can wear them in a New England winter.


BAM. It took a ridiculous amount of time and effort, but I just put off the New Balance sneakers for one more year.

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Why I’m Happy I Got Shit for Mother’s Day

First poop on the potty

This Mother’s Day I got to sleep in and spend the day with my family. I received some nice gifts—flowers, a spa gift card from my husband, a pimp vacuum from my mother-in-law. But the best gift of all came from my 20 month old.

It wasn’t the typical homemade card or an extra squeezy hug — it was shit. That’s because my baby made her very first POOP ON THE POTTY on Mother’s Day.

After eating Chinese food at my in-laws, my daughter declared “Poop. Poop.” I decided to put her on the toilet just to see what would happen. At first I didn’t think she did anything at all, so I peeked in the potty for good measure. Then I spotted the unimaginable and started shrieking, “She did it, she did it!”

All of a sudden a parade of relatives popped their heads into the powder room and congratulated my daughter on her achievement. We both beamed with pride.

A few years ago I wouldn’t have believed that one little doody could make me so ecstatic. But as soon as my daughter made her poop in the potty, a huge rush of emotions came over me: disbelief, pride, happiness.

Since then I’ve shared my daughter’s accomplishment with anyone who would listen (including you). Motherhood makes us do such weird things…

As a friend of mine joked, it was the perfect gift for the girl who has everything.

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It Sucks for Mom When you Have a Sick Kid


Alone and bra-less, I am at Dairy Queen eating a Blizzard with extra peanut butter cups. For dinner. Shameful, I know, but right now I don’t care.

My daughter has been sick for four days with a typical childhood illness. As parents we feel so bad for our children when they are ill that we do everything we can to make them comfortable.

To that end:

  • I have had Caillou on repeat for 96 hours straight.
  • I have alternated Tylenol and Motrin around the clock.
  • I have offered extra cookies.
  • I have suggested that we go in the basement and play on the Step 2 Climber at midnight.
  • I have neglected any daily grooming that I may or may not have needed in order to devote myself to the above activities.

Anything to make her happy.

Finally she is well, but now I’m not. I’m completely frazzled and exhausted.  My house is littered with rogue thermometers and Saltine cracker crumbs that the dog will not lick off of the couch. The refrigerator is empty.

So for the first time in days, tonight I did something for myself. Right after Caillou ended on Sprout, I put my daughter to bed and raced out in the rain for a sanity-saving ice cream.

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A Mom Laments Cute Shoes

Inside DSW

I went to DSW for no good reason. I don’t really need shoes, and I’m not the type of gal to collect them. But I was out of work early and had time to kill before I picked up my daughter from daycare, so I found myself pulling off of the highway and walking into the shoe store.

I took my time. I looked at sandals and thought of summer. I looked at the clearance rack and thought about winter.

I pretended that I was actually going to buy something. But even if I was going to make a purchase, there was nothing that I really needed. What I needed, I thought to myself, was a Melissa & Doug wooden food set and a Little Tikes water table.

And then I saw them.

Green Shoes

They were fantastically green, totally impractical and shiny.

Something about these shoes tugged at me. Something about them made me sad. All at once they reminded me of spring break and dancing and getting ready to go out with my girlfriends.

Now as a woman approaching 30 with a toddler, I only wear heels to work and weddings. So who are these shoes for?

Someone without children. Someone with a disposable income. Someone who goes out at night. Someone who buys a pair of shoes just to match one outfit. Someone who isn’t me.

And then she showed up. A ponytailed teenager with her put-together mom and tag along sister. “That’s them.” She told her entourage. The group agreed that the green would totally make her prom dress pop, and they took them to the register.

The magnificent green shoes were for someone whose mom was going to buy them for her—not for someone who is a mom and buys shoes for someone else.

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Kim Kardashian Alienates Parents While Trying to Cash in on Them

After we all just had to hear about how fantastic Kim Kardashian’s vagina was post-childbirth, the millionaire mommy has another doozy for us. Here’s one of her recent Facebook updates:


I thought it would be something cute, so I clicked on the link at the end of her post.  Now fill in the blank by guessing what she’s actually talking about.  “Until you have your own child, you don’t realize____”

  • The sappy: How magical it is to create a new life
  • The funny: How much baby feet can stink
  • The practical: How important it is to get life insurance
  • The relatable: How all moms are in this together

But when I followed the link to her blog, I was blown away to learn that she was actually referring to the importance of quality fabric. She said:

 “Until you have your own child, you don’t realize how important it is for fabrics to be extra soft and accessible.”

When I think of things that should be accessible for babies and children, I think of healthy food, education and medical care. Fabric doesn’t make my list of parental concerns.

But Kim and sister Kourtney are very concerned with fabric. I learned from Kim’s blog post that soon they’ll be hawking their new Kardashian Kids baby clothes at a Babies “R” Us near you. And they’re trying to add to their net worth by cashing in on us regular moms.

You’d think that if Kim was trying to sell us something she’d at least attempt to relate to us. Well Kim, here’s some advice. A normal mom’s “extra soft” fabric is probably a hand-me-down. (The more you wash it, the softer it gets.) And as for  accessibility, every store on the planet already sells Carters.

Now I’ve been at this parenting thing for almost a year and a half, and the only time fabric ever crossed my mind was when I was trying to scrub spit up or poop stains out of it. I think Kim has someone else do that for her.

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Why the Mommy Wars are Fake and we Should Stop Perpetuating Them

Photo by Davisommerfeld (edited) Licensed.

Photo by Davisommerfeld (edited) Licensed.

That mom who hurt your feelings is not in the trenches of the Mommy Wars. There are no trenches, and there is no war. The truth is that she is just a bitch and probably always was. She is a grown up version of the girl in high school who talked behind your back and then asked to borrow a pen in French class (which she never returned.) You may have grown up since graduation — but she didn’t.

The “Mommy Wars” are just an excuse for people to be nasty. And we’re all getting sick of the poems, open letters and photos taking over social media to end the war. The best part is that sources like say the Mommy Wars aren’t even real. But if you do find yourself a casualty, do what we tell our children and make new friends.

Here’s a look back at that judgmental girl who grew up into a judgmental mom:

Judgmental Girl
She said she’s 100 pounds? She should use the scale at the gym because hers is wrong.

She’s going to get pregnant. She sits directly on public toilet seats.

Her car is such a junker. I would be sooo embarrassed to drive that to school.

She missed school because of cramps? She is so overdramatic.

That’s why she’s fat. She’s on AOL all day.

Did you see her tattoo?

Haha she’s afraid to use tampons? What a loser.

No wonder her face broke out — she eats school lunch.

Judgmental Mom
I can’t believe she uses a temporal thermometer. Rectal is the only way to get an accurate temperature.

Her kid is going to get MRSA from those public changing tables.

Eww look at her stroller. I bet you a latté she’ll need a new one by the time she pops out her next kid.

She gave him antibiotics again? Poor thing will develop an immunity.

Her baby is HUGE. They don’t limit his iPad time.

She pierced her daughter’s ears?

She’s the only mom I know who doesn’t use  organic diapers.

Her baby’s acne is from processed baby food.

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