I’m That Mom

As moms, we all have some days that go better than others.  We are more aware and critical of our own shortcomings than anyone.  A couple weeks ago Hey Megan texted me and said, “Oh, I have a post for you today. I completely embarrassed myself.” Then she proceeded to leave me wondering for 2 whole hours!!!  So, if you need a little post to reassure you that you are not the only one that is THAT mom, take a second to share with Megan (one of the best moms we know) what happens when things don’t go quite as planned. 



I am THAT mom.  No not that mom.  Not the one with perfect hair and makeup at 7:00 in the morning.  Not the one that makes darling lunches using Bento boxes and and food art.  Not the one that has the BEST ideas for crafts and activities for school parties.


I’m the other THAT mom.  The one sitting next to that perfect mom.  The one who probably didn’t take a shower yet today (see Tracey’s post on that).  The one who walks her kids to school in her pj’s.  The one who let’s her kids do their school projects all by themselves using stuff from the recycling bin (and you can tell!!).  Yep, that’s me.  You know that movie Hope Floats with Sandra Bullock and Harry Conick Jr?  And Sandra Bullock brings her daughter her lunch at school dressed in an ugly robe and total bedhead?  Yeah that’s me–like every day.

But today was especially priceless.  So, in my defense, it has been an especially crazy week–per my own making, my husband would remind me.  I had 2 middle of the night visitors last night so I was even MORE tired than usual (and I am usually pretty darn tired).  I decided to let my kindergartner sleep in (since he was one of those middle of the night visitors and I just couldn’t tell if he was getting sick or sleep walking).  So, thinking I am totally ahead of the game, I drive my older two kids to school.  Just as they jumped out my daughter asked if I could walk them in.  I thought “Sure, I’m totally ahead of schedule now and it will be just a minute.”  

Ugh, fatal mistake–ever thinking I am ahead of the game.  As I walk out of the school my friend texts me and says “are you at the meeting already?”  WHAT??  I have a meeting??  Oh man.  This is a meeting for the parents of the gifted and talented children in the school.  Seriously.  My kiddo is obviously naturally gifted and talented because anyone can see I’m not helping that situation!  I trudge into the classroom with about 60 other parents–all dressed perfectly because, you know, they are the gifted and talented parents.  

Let me paint you this picture.  I AM IN MY PAJAMAS!!  I pulled on a fleece jacket (courtesy of BazzarVoice–seriously) but everything else is pajamas.  I have not brushed my teeth–I’m not sure I have even opened my mouth yet.  My hair is…well it’s my hair.  Not sure there is a huge difference between when I do it and when I don’t.


I sit in the back hoping no one will sit next to me.  Tender mercies–my awesome neighbor Jen comes in and plops down next to me–looking gorgeous.  But she sees me like this all of the time, so I am good.  She gives me an up and down look and gratefully keeps her comments to herself (although somewhere that day I remember her commenting that it wasn’t so bad since it’s only a small step down from the running clothes I normally wear all day).  Well, thank goodness she is sitting there, I not so tactful cover my mouth and beg her for gum or a breath mint.  Thank goodness she has 2 cherry flavored cough drops!  I threw one in my mouth and she did the same (probably because my breath was so bad that she had sympathy bad breath or something!).


Just when I think things couldn’t get worse, it happens.  Guess who sits next to me?  That mom.  You know the first “that” mom I was talking about (yes, you Michelle).  Perfectly put together, has 3 kids, is the PTA president, etc etc etc.  And she is sitting next to me.  Well, at this point I have given up on finding my child’s special binder (yes the other parents found their child’s binder but Alex is related to me so…the binder is lost).  The presentation begins.


And it’s hot.


And it gets hotter and hotter as more and more parents pile in.


 And I am in a fleece jacket!  That I can’t take off!  Because I am in my pajamas!!  (and who sleeps in a bra?  not me–not that that would matter except that I have nursed four kids!)  So now I am SWEATING and very smelly because I have not taken a shower.  And no kidding, after several attempts for me to contact my husband BEFORE the meeting starting to let him know he had to bring the remaining 2 children to me, he finally calls back.  So, now I have to get up, during the middle of the meeting, and weave my way through the parents to the hall to tell my husband to look at his texts!!  Jeesh.


Finally the misery is over.  I walk out of the meeting and in comes the other two kids.  Jack is stimping his pigeon-toed run and yelling “Mom, Mom I made it!”


Yes if people hadn’t seen me yet, they now all turned to look at me.  I just smiled and said “awesome”.


I’m pretty sure I will never be motivated to wake up early enough to avoid all of this.  I am a procrastinator–see previous post.  But my kids are awesome.  They never seem to be embarrassed by me..yet.  Maybe it’s because they don’t know any better or maybe because they are just awesome.  So, thank you Sophia for holding my hand the whole way to your class.  And thank you Jack for yelling at the top of your lungs, letting everyone know that this mess in front of them is your mom.


Food Magician

“Hey Megan” is back with another hysterical post. A post about a certain little food magician. A food magician that happens to be one of my very favorite little boys. If you are easily grossed out, proceed with caution. However, you should definitely proceed, because this kid is a riot.

This post is coming with a picture – a disgusting picture. 

Food Magician

I suggest you read the post and then come back and look at the picture, which will make you go “eww” and ask all sorts of questions like, “How did he do that?” and “How did she not see/smell/notice that?” Trust me, I know. My husband and I asked the same questions. Anyway, here’s the story about that gross picture.

Let me start by saying, I love my kids. I really, really do. I got one good eater out of my lot.  Literally, the youngest one. He is an AWESOME eater. To the point where it is actually alarming to watch him eat. But that’s it. He took all of the good-eating genes. The rest of my kids are TERRIBLE eaters. We almost never eat out because it is so not worth it. They just complain and then don’t eat. I enacted a “thank-you bite” program at my house (courtesy of my sister Brenya). That means that my kids have to take one “thank-you bite” of every side/vegetable and 5 “thank-you bites” of every main dish. There are some nights when my kids literally only eat 6 bites of food for dinner. (Did I mention they have my husband’s stubborn personality?) Now that I have painted that nice, rosy picture for you, let me talk about child number 3 – Jack.

Jack. I ADORE Jack. You cannot beat this kid’s personality. He LOVES being alive. Everything is fantastic to him. He is always happy and laughing. He looks up to everyone. But he hates food.  He hates food that is good for him. If I were to allow him a steady diet of cookies, candy, and ice cream, he would be totally fine. He tolerates cereal. He is required to finish his bagel and cream cheese at school. But dinner…Ugh. It is a battle. Now, Jack did not turn into a picky eater. I swear he was born this way. He was my most difficult child to nurse. He refused a bottle (and the pediatrician requested he take one bottle a day but even she gave up!). He literally turned orange during the baby food months because all he would swallow was carrots! He has always been a picky eater.

So, much to my surprise, one day about two and a half months ago, Jack became the champion eater. I mean champion. He finished faster than everyone, including his little brother (who, did I mention, could quite possibly be a professional eater?).  Not that I don’t trust my kids, but I did not trust him. He had suddenly become a food magician. I knew he was hiding that food somewhere. I mean finishing all of his steak in three minutes?? That was a three-day process in September! I checked toilets, garbage cans, the garage, everywhere! But found nothing. I watched him eat, but came up empty.

So, for Sunday dinner a few weeks ago we were having steak and corn on the cob. Jack gobbled up two ears of corn (the one out of two veggies he’ll eat – but just on the cob). He told me he was done and I looked at has plate and said, “Eat your steak”.  Thirty seconds later, he handed me an empty plate. Seriously?!? So I checked the table and on the floor I saw six pieces of steak. I told Jack to pick them up. The look on his face was sheer terror, which I couldn’t figure out. Then he handed me two pieces of steak. I asked, “Where is the rest of the steak?” (Meaning the other four pieces from the ground). Then Jack’s little brother – you know, the expert eater that watches EVERYTHING Jack does – piped in with, “Jack puts his food under the table, mom!” Click! My husband reached his hand under the table—in the little “pocket” where the table extender goes—and puled out two month’s worth of dinner.

Or at least the part of two-month’s worth of dinners that Jack refused to eat. So disgusting!!! 

Did it smell? Yes. Occasionally I would get a whiff so I would just clean out my fridge, my freezer, and my pantry.

Ants? Yep. But my pest control just kept coming back out. 

What did this food magician survive on? Apparently fruit and candy.

And that bagel at school . . . 

The Christmas Card Procrastinator.

Christmas Card
Pixelated to protect the identity of innocent children.
Card design by www.birdesignshop.com Photography by www.samstowndesigns.com

Still trying to decide what to do for your family holiday card? Well, you’re not alone. In fact, Hey Megan is here to tell you about how this year may be the year that she becomes a Christmas Card winner.

Oh, the season is upon us. Black Friday (which started Thursday and was still going strong on the Saturday after Thanksgiving) is just about over. Today is Cyber Monday. Incredibly, my Christmas decorations are up… mostly because it took so long to get my Halloween decorations put away that I told my husband just to bring down the Christmas stuff while he was up there (in our very icky storage space above the garage). So, if that opener didn’t make it clear, I am a procrastinator. And I am not very creative, or organized, nor do I have an eye for home decor. But to be more clear, 90% of my Christmas decorations are gifts from other people. I just put them up wherever the kids want them every year. Not that I don’t love the season—I LOVE this time of year. I’m just not…well…my sisters. They got all of the genes when it comes to beautifying their houses and designing fantastic Christmas cards with adorable letters inside.

So, I ask you. Where are you when it comes to Christmas cards? I am positive our own Tracey will have ADORABLE pictures of her kids in matching outfits doing something priceless and poignant on her Christmas cards. Most years I am happy I get some kind of picture of at least 75% of my kids out to enough of my family members. Don’t get me wrong. I love getting everyone else’s Christmas cards. I love seeing how everyone has changed (She lost weight! They had ANOTHER kid! Thank goodness that one grew into his looks, etc). I also understand that Christmas cards are a great way to keep in touch with people you NEVER keep in touch with other than FB stalking. Clearly, I am not against Christmas cards, I’m just not any good at them!

Every Thanksgiving I think, “This is the year my Christmas cards is going to be outstanding and include a fabulous letter about all the goings-on at the Peterson home.” Then, three days before Christmas I am stuffing envelopes at the post office while buying stamps. My card is a picture of my kids wearing… clothes, doing… something in the same general vicinity of each other… usually slightly out of focus. Urg. Fail. Again. And this after reading a darling poem about all of the great things my nephews have done this year. Or staring for weeks at my sister’s three kids, dressed to the 9’s striking adorable poses in a card that is practically a short photo book. Fail. Again.

But this year I am on tops of things. Yep. I got Tracey to take our family pictures in June (yes, I wanted bluebonnets, but like I said—procrastinator). So, gorgeous pictures of my kids smiling and wearing coordinating outfits? Check! And my good friend Sara gave me this cute little notebook to write down all of the cute things my kids said and did (yes, I know she gave it to me years ago—procrastinator). I finally started writing stuff in it! Material for a cute letter? Check! Wahoo, I’m on a roll! Now all I have to do is get the pictures downloaded from the disk to a photo site (I know, I know, Tracey! I still haven’t done that!), order the cards, write the letter, stuff the envelopes, print up the addresses . . .

Oh, man. This might be another fail . . .

Stay tuned!

How I Became a Runner

That’s right people!  She’s back!  Hey Megan is back sharing her story on how a girl who got kicked out of dance class (Oh, keep reading.) became a runner.  Since she is one of the people that keeps Tracey on track (Get it? On track? Running?  Never mind, that was terrible.) we are so glad she is the running expert that she is.

How I Became A Runner

Let me be clear.  I never intended to be a runner.  I ended up being a runner.  In fact, I have only recently come to realize that I actually became a runner.  My neighbor just finished her first race–a Susan G. Komen 5k.  She had a whole tam running with her from her job…but not me.  Hmm…I’m not easily offended so as she was talking to me about her team, I chided her on  not asking me.  Her response was that I was a runner–and she wasn’t.  Ha!  So here I am officially labeled a runner.  But let me digress.  Like I was saying I NEVER intended to be a runner.

My Fitness Journey or “How I Became a Runner”

My journey starts with genetics to be honest.  My dad played basketball forever.  I mean forever.  He played pick up games at our church at least once a week for as long as I can remember.  Long after his peers had retired from church ball, he was still showing up.  I believe it was a pretty bad back injury that ultimately sidelined him–from basketball.  He still skis and goes to the gym.  My dad started the youth basketball league in my town and ran it–forever.  My mom…she supported my dad in his exercise efforts.  Not that she hasn’t tried some forms of exercise.  I believe she did line dancing for quite awhile and she takes walks either with or without grandkids.  My point is, I think I had a good example of an exerciser in my home.

So my first foray into athletics was dance.  A disaster for SOOOO many reasons.  But that actually ended quickly because, well…I got kicked out for “goofing around.”  I don’t remember this at all.  And I might have taken my little sister down with me, but she ended up going back to dance later without me.  Which was good–she has rhythm I most definitely do not.  (As was evident in every aerobics class I ever tried).  So then I was dutifully enrolled in BYBA (Belmont Youth Basketball Association) for how many years?  Awhile I guess.  Of course, I am not the “tall one” in my family and basketball wasn’t my thing, so my career ended early.  So when high school hit I played field hockey–mostly because I couldn’t get “cut” from the  team because no one did!  And incredibly, I wasn’t too bad.  It was my sport.  I really enjoyed playing it and I was good enough that my coach pulled me aside and told me to do track for the next two seasons so I would get hurt playing other sports (which I never would have made the team for anyway, but in my egocentric teenage mind that sounded better).  So I played field hockey through high school.  The college I went to DEFINITELY did not have field hockey–I’m not sure anyone there had even heard of field hockey. BUT, I was in Utah so I skied.

 A lot.

Maybe too much.  Maybe not.

I had fun which was reflected in my freshman grades…

I skied with my sister and my future brother in law.  I skied with friends I knew and new friends!  In the summer I mountain biked and hiked and went river rafting.  I had a lot of fun in college.  And I ran.  I started running just to get out of my apartment.  There was this great trail that led right up into the canyon.  At first I just ran a mile or two but eventually I ran up to 10 miles at a time.  I didn’t like the running part but it was something to do.

Now fast forward–I’m married and working.  Now is when I tried out the gym classes.  I didn’t kickboxing, yoga, some kind of weight class, aerobics (fail), step aerobics (epic fail), spin, you get the picture.  I dabbled in them all but I ended up becoming a yoga instructor.  Seriously.  I know I don’t believe it either.  I’m thinking I got talked into by the physical therapists at my work…

Anyway, that didn’t last long because right after my yoga training I got pregnant with twins.  So all forms of solo activities came to a screeching halt–and have essentially not yet resumed.  I honestly cannot remember if I did any organized form of exercise after my twins were born.  Neither my husband nor I can remember a whole lot of those first couple of years.

So lets just skip to after my fourth child was born.  I knew I was done being pregnant (mainly because we were/are having a REALLY hard time keeping track of number 3).  I wanted to “be healthy” but have a genetic predisposition to being unable to stop eating chocolate (thanks mom!).  So, I had a double stroller and I started running.  Yep, just like Forrest Gump.  My intent was to run until I had a enough time to do some other more enjoyable form of exercise.  Time is funny though…somehow no matter how old my kids get I still don’t have any–time.  Weird.  So, with my 30 minutes of free time each morning I load up a kid or two in my double jogger and hit the pavement.  All four of my kids have spent considerable time in that stroller with me huffing behind them.

And now I’m a runner.

 I have finished two Tough Mudder races (thanks Jeanene) and a sprint triathlon (thanks Krista) and a couple of 15K (thanks Bren!)  I almost exclusively train for these through running.  Because now that’s what I do.  Will I stop?  Probably not.  I like it now.  It’s cheap and I can do it anywhere. Running starts my day off.  I always run outside so I get some fresh air in the mix.  My fellow runners–whether intentional or not–always give a wave or head nod of camaraderie as we pass.  I’ll stick with it.