A blog is born.
Welcome to my musings on pop culture and parenting. I am the Pop Mama and this is a safe place to steal away from your screaming child and get your fix on what's up with Beyonce and great poop stain remover tips.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Breaking News: Another one bites the dust...

The other day I blogged about Bryan Masche -- father of the sextuplets on Raising Sextuplets (WE channel) getting arrested for disorderly conduct, resisting arrest and threatening domestic violence.  Well, now he has more legal troubles as his wife, Jenny Masche, filed for legal separation on September 17th, just days after his run in with police.  Allegedly the threats of domestic violence came after an argument about where to take their children for the day.  

On the show Raising Sextuplets, Bryan does come across as a hot-head and definitely appears to have some anger issues.  Some of the anger issues even seem to stem from he and Jenny having sextuplets.  There is talk in one episode about his resentment of her for pushing fertility treatments, etc.  This season the family made a move on their own to Destin, Florida.  They left behind two sets of grandparents and some aunts & uncles who provided a support system for the family.  It seemed like a risky decision, especially since Bryan didn't have a job that would support the family down there and Jenny would have to work insane hours as a physician's assistant to keep the household afloat.  Let's just say it wasn't well planned -- at all.  I'm kind of out of the loop on the show though because from the reports about the separation and the arrest, it seems like the family relocated back to Arizona and no longer lives in Florida.  

Life with one child is hard on a marriage, so I can imagine how stressful six can be for a couple.  But, it makes me sad that another marriage has failed (or is at least in big doo doo).  I'm hoping that they can work it out because as Kate Gosselin could tell you, being a single mom of sextuplets is not a piece of cake.  Also, Jenny Masche has far less star power than Kate had, so there will not be any Dancing with the Stars deal headed her way. 

3 is not a crowd...

The fall TV season is underway and I am enjoying it immensely.  I love this time of year -- snuggling up under a blanket in front of the tv, drinking tea and eating funsize candy (because I can't resist the Halloween displays).  Last week I watched the premieres of Modern Family, The Office and 30 Rock and got some much needed laughs.  I am loving Matt Damon's appearances on 30 Rock and I can't get enough of Alec Baldwin's one-liners.  These three shows are my favorite sitcoms-- my "Tri-Fecta."

Speaking of things that come in threes -- how about three wives?  Yep, I watched the pilot of Sister Wives last night and loved every weird minute of it.  The Browns live in Utah (uh, where else?) and are polygamists - or "plygs" as they dubbed themselves, with their children being "plyglets."  Kody is the dad/husband and he is married to Meri (wife #1), Janelle (wife #2) and Christine (wife #3).  Kody is father to 12 children and one on the way -- and will apparently take a 4th wife during the show (Robyn).  Wow.  I also learned that Christine (third wifey) doesn't own a toaster because toasters kill more people than sharks do each year and she makes her toast in the oven...

My real interest in this show are the details.  I understand that this family has a belief that I do not and I don't condemn them for it.  As long as they aren't hurting anyone (like taking 13 year olds as wives), I don't see the harm...I mean, sure I think it is strange and must give the children some skewed view of the world, but to each his own.  However, I want to know how the relationships/ household / everyday living part works for this family.  Did the neighbors know before the show came out?  Is it like Big Love where one wife kind of directs the rest?  Does the family eat meals together? Do they file taxes jointly or separately?  

The Browns live in one home that is made up of three separate apartment type units (where is the 4th wife going to go?).  One of the wives said that they used to home school, but now the children go to school with children of other polygamists in the community -- ummm, what?  How very convenient...I'd love to visit the school -- maybe Oprah can.

I'm not the only one interested in the Browns now -- the police in Lehi, Utah are now investigating Kody and his wives for felony bigamy, which is a third degree felony that is rarely investigated.  I'm sure the police / prosecutors feel like they need to do something to uphold the law now that the family is basically flaunting the "crime" on television.  As an attorney I am curious as to the elements of the crime of bigamy-- what constitutes "marrying" more than one person -- is it a ceremony?  Just saying that you are married to more than one person?  Does there have to be a paper trail?  I'm going to have to look it up.   

Monday, September 27, 2010

The Memory Of

The past week was a rough one for me and my family.  In addition to some stressful doctor's appointments for Cam and dealing with a situation at daycare, we also received some devasting news regarding the loss of a loved one.  I am heartbroken and grieving.  The death of a loved one is always difficult and emotional, but as a new mom I was touched in a different way by the news.  On one level I am processing the same emotions of grief that I would have felt before becoming a parent, but now I am also grieving for the fact that Cameron will not know this sparkling and interesting individual.  His only experience with this person will be through our memories, our words, our photos -- and I feel like those will never be enough to do this person's spirit justice.  I am thankful that they met each other once, even if he will not remember, I will. 

Life is hard, but it is also full of so much joy.  Seeing the world through Cameron's eyes as he discovers simple things -- a dog, the wind on his face, a new toy or even his own thumb -- is a gift that I open everyday.  As a parent, I try to do my best to keep Cam safe and healthy everyday.  I take care of him when he is sick (with yet another ear infection), I play with him, I teach him and I soothe him.  It is my job to help him learn his story --  so I will keep the memory of those lost alive for my son, so that he may understand his past, his family and even his future.   

Thursday, September 23, 2010

What the Thrush?

Before buying up pregnancy manuals, parenting guides and breastfeeding books my only reference to thrush was of the medium-sized songbird variety -- or it just made me think of a field with reeds blowing in the wind (have no idea why).  Anyways, now I know it as "OMG my nipple hurts."  Yes, I think I have thrush -- which I'm sure is too much information, but seriously, it sucks.  Of all of the demeaning things a mom already has to go through, now this?  I've already had an emergency c-section during which my water broke as they were moving me to the operating table and my lady business was exposed to all the world, I've breast fed in a tiny chair in a daycare room of babies and caregivers, I've been peed on, pooped on and barfed on and I've pumped on the fly in the front seat of my car many a time...and now I have to figure out how to rid myself (and probably Cam) of what looks to be thrush.  I have no medical diagnosis yet, but I am hoping to get into my doc tomorrow to confirm what I already think (and what WebMD has told me).  I know, poor me...life could be worse, but seriously, this week has not been fun.

Last night I watched 19 Kids and Counting from Tuesday.  During the episode I kept wondering -- do the Duggars ever get angry with their children, with each other, with other people?  Is there ever a need for discipline in that house, or is it hunky dorey all the time?  I feel like that side of the Duggars is NEVER shown and maybe they request that it not be shown -- the disciplining part, that is.  I mean, I'm sure that Jill and Jinger aren't sneaking out of the house after curfew to go smoke pot with friends from the home school conference or anything, but seriously, with 19 children there has to be some incidence of disappointment, bad behavior or back talking.  I am fully prepared to have sullen, miserable teen named Cameron come 2023 -- did I just write that number?  Funny when I was little how I thought that by 2023 we'd all be living like the Jetsons -- or at least our cars would be hovercrafts -- and maybe they will by that time.  But I digress. 

I just feel like the Duggars are so damn cheerful all the time.  I know that someone in that house has got to have a bad day once in awhile.  I am probably feeling guilty because I my day has been less than stellar and I have been complaining about it...but seriously, I needed to see a little reality in my reality TV.

Oh, and I forgot to DVR Teen Mom this week.  Drat.  I heard that Farrah tried to make Sophia some clothes to save money...brilliant.

Monday, September 20, 2010

No Attention Span

I have the attention span of a fly. This was not the case pre-baby at all...I could comfortably sit through a movie or television show, finish more than 20 pages of a book and have long phone conversations. Now, I can barely make it through a 1/2 hour tv show (even with fast forwarding through commercials). Although I know that my new mom attention span is definitely shorter than it was before, I must consider that perhaps somethings are just not as interesting as they once were -- and my free time is precious!

For instance, I used to be able to sit through an entire episode of Little People, Big World, but now I cannot. This is not necessarily due to baby, this is because that show is now BORING. It has gone the way of Kate Plus 8 in that the family now has too much money, the kids are getting older and the parents hate each other. I liked it when my reality TV folks were strugglin' and they didn't go on mega buck vacations or buy silly adult toys (like suped up ATVs). I liked to see how families with lots of kids (or little people) lived day to day -- and now that I know, I don't care anymore -- or at least I don't need to see Season 5 of the same old crap (just bigger, brighter and more expensive).

That being said, I am still going to fill my DVR with all different shows, including the reality tv snoozers like Little People. I do this so I can pick and choose my poison and boil down to the keepers. For instance, my husband and I had recorded all of the Hung episodes on HBO, but then just went through and erased them when we lost interest. I also record movies of interest -- such as (500) Days of Summer and Working Girl. That way I can watch a little here and there and usually I lose interest within the first 30 minutes and just erase them (not Working Girl). Shows on the list for fall: Parenthood, Sister Wives, anything with Bethenny Frankel, Modern Family, 30 Rock, The Office, The Biggest Loser -- okay, I'm just going to stop there because I watch way too much tv and am getting embarrassed.

In pop news -- it was a stellar week of police work. My favorite Jersey Italian Joe Giudice was arrested for driving with a suspended license following his DUI citation; Simon Barney (Real Housewives of O.C.) was arrested for domestic violence (throwing a dog leash at ex-wife Tamra) and Raising Sextuplets dad Bryan Masche was arrested for disorderly conduct, resisting arrest and domestic violence. There should be an entire show just dedicated to following the crazy crap that reality stars get themselves into. Like a hybrid of Cops and Celebrity Rehab.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Pity Party

I have had what seems to be a sinus infection for about 4 weeks now and I have been ignoring it and treating it with gobs of Tylenol (safe for breastfeeding). It seems like the sinus infection/cold/allergies/and whatever Cam brought home from daycare is never going away and I am just getting more and more miserable. Before becoming a new mom / working parent I would have dropped everything and visited the doctor to get whatever kind of meds they would prescribe and then would have taken the rest of the day to catch up on shows lingering on my DVR. Now -- I can't seem to allow myself the time out to take care of me. I have no idea why except that I feel overwhelmed with responsibility already and taking time to acknowledge that I am actually sick would simply screw up the entire system that I am working so hard to maintain.

Things I didn't know before I had a baby:

1. The baby will get sick, drive everyone nuts and then recover just in time for the entire rest of the household to take ill with what the baby had in the first place. Count on this happening.

2. If you are a working mom, you will find yourself on a very tight routine each night after work which may or may not include: washing pump parts, making bottles for the next day, making dinner, making lunches for next day, filling coffee pot for next morning to save that 3 minutes the next morning, folding laundry, rocking the crying/overtired/exasperated infant, taking your shower so the next morning you don't have to get up at 6am to do so, packing the diaper bag, reading mail, paying bills, etc. Yes, you get the point -- if you work you have a short 4-5 hours (depending on your bed time) to complete a long list of necessary tasks in order to keep everything running smoothly (or at least not falling apart). If you are lucky, you have a partner who will pick up some of these tasks as well. Thanks to my husband for making dinner many a night!

3. You will forget things that you never forgot before because you are so overwhelmed with the details of daily living/survival. Like what? I forgot.

4. You will not see your friends because your precious free time is spent with your family.

5. You won't mind most of these items (except for maybe some of the rigidity of #2) because one smile from that little one will make you feel like it is all worth it.

I've been told it does get easier... These are the days when I wish for a nanny/housekeeper...like Alice on the Brady Bunch. I made a doctor's appointment for tomorrow morning.

Monday, September 13, 2010

I'm surrounded...

You know how sometimes it seems like everyone you know is getting married and you are buying about a million wedding gifts one summer, well right now I feel like everyone I know is pregnant! Definitely pretty normal for someone my age, but seriously, the last year or two has been another baby boom -- especially in the celebrity world. Right now I know at least 5 people who are pregnant and could name about 5 more celebs who are sporting the bump or just gave birth (probably more if given an adequate amount of time...)

A subject of much speculation and rumors over the years has been Penelope Cruz's uterus and whether or not it is filled with the progeny of whatever hot actor she was dating at the time (think Tom Cruise pre-Kate, etc.) Well, after many false reports, it was confirmed that YES, she is 4 1/2 months pregnant! Congratulations to Penelope and hubby Javier Bardem -- may your child be the cutest little Spanish bebe ever!
This photo was taken on the set of the newest Pirates of the Caribbean movie. I'm not as concerned with trying to spot Penelope's baby bump as I am concerned with the fact that they are making yet another Pirates of the Caribbean movie...enough already!

A celeb who (probably) recently gave birth is Isla Fisher -- although this has not been confirmed by her reps or her. This unnamed child is her second with husband Sacha Baron Cohen (aka Borat). This couple always strikes me as an odd one -- he is so tall and frankly kind of weird (albeit a funny kind of weird) and she is so petite and sweet looking. Seriously, she is probably 5 foot or under and he is definitely over 6 foot. They have a daughter, Olive and now another bambino...hopefully they will share the gender and name at some point -- or at least acknowledge that they had another child.

Other recent celeb baby births: Mario Lopez (AC Slater) welcomes baby girl with girlfriend; Wonder Years star Danica McKeller welcomes baby boy (I'm wondering why she is still in the spotlight at all); Rachel Dratch (SNL alum) welcomed baby boy; and Kaitlin Olson and Rob McElhenney (It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia) welcomed baby boy. Lots of little boys!!! I swear when I found out I was pregnant with Cameron, it seemed like everybody was having boys. Maybe it was just me, but seriously most people I knew who were pregnant at the same time as me were having boys too. Does it go in cycles -- sometimes it is the season of the girl and sometimes it is the season of the boy?

A show that I started watching last spring -- Parenthood -- begins again tonight! I can't wait. Not only do I love the concept (based on the film Parenthood), but I love the actors -- Lauren Graham (I was a huge Gilmore Girls junkie), Erika Christensen, Peter Krause, Craig T. Nelson and Dax Shepard. Worth a watch!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Mommy Dearest

Although this was a short work week, it seemed much much longer! I am so ready for the weekend and to spend some family time. Speaking of family time, this week I caught up with two very different families -- the Duggars and Catelynn's family on MTV Teen Mom. The Duggars, as you know are wholesome and loving and would never utter an unkind word to one another. At the other end of the spectrum is Catelynn's mom, April. In fact, TV was rife with Mommy issues this week...

On this week's Teen Mom April exhibited some of the most appalling parenting I had yet to see on this show -- and it was coming from an adult and NOT a teen mom. April took Catelynn and one of Catelynn's friends prom dress shopping and when Catelynn preferred a dress that her mother thought was "ugly," April freaked out, shut down and resorted to berating Catelynn and calling her the b word over and over. I couldn't believe it. You would have thought that April was actually the child in the situation and not just a child, a drugged out juvenile delinquent. April's behavior only got more disgusting when she made the girls leave the store and then texted Catelynn saying that she owed her gas money. All because Catelynn liked a dress that she didn't...Catelynn didn't even buy the disputed dress and instead bought a different one...probably to appease her childish verbally abusive mother. I couldn't believe what I was watching, but it certainly reinforces Catelynn's and Tyler's decision to give Carly away for adoption. Can you imagine what type of life Carly would have with a grandma like that? I truly cannot imagine what Catelynn's life is like with a volatile mother and a stepfather in rehab. For Butch's (Catelynn's stepdad, Tyler's biological dad-- I know, it's creepy) rap sheet visit: http://starcasm.net/archives/31202
Farrah on Teen Mom was also dealing with mother/daughter issues of her own. After her mother's completion of mandatory community service and anger management counseling, Farrah and her mom reconciled enough to attend counseling together and "hang out" with Farrah's daughter Sophia in tow. I was happy to see this development, although I think Farrah and her mother still have a lot of issues to work out...keep up the therapy ladies!

To end on a happy note -- we will return to Pleasantville and the Duggar family. Michelle and Josie are back in the fold at the family compound and readjusting to life around the million other family members. Michelle has to segregate Josie from the other kids for the majority of the time to shield her from germs and excessive touching. Josie had a well check-up and was progressing quite nicely, although it is pretty amazing to think that she was born in December and weighs about what my son did at birth. I hope she continues to thrive. At the end of the episode Michelle addressed the question of whether or not she would have more children after this experience with Josie. Her answer was that if God wanted to bless her with another gift (child), then she would welcome it. She explained that she had preeclampsia with her twins (her 2nd pregnancy) and when she looks at the child she had after the twins (Jill), she knows that she was meant to keep having children even after having preeclampsia -- or something like that...
Anyways, my recording ended while she was still talking, so I don't know if she touched on the fact that at her advanced maternal age, preeclampsia could KILL her and leave all of her other 19 children motherless. As someone who had preeclampsia, it scares me to have another and I'm about 13 years younger than her...I just want her to talk about that possibility. Maybe she did and I missed it.

Okay, so Friday is here and I am going to enjoy my weekend -- and hopefully that bottle of wine I posted about yesterday. I'm also going to give my mom a big hug for not being an abusive crazy person and for not having 19 other children who would take the attention off of me...love you mom!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

I am mother, hear me pour...

Has anyone ever heard of that wine - "Mommy's Time Out"? Well, I need a glass. It has been a long week already and I still have one more day to go - boo! I do have to thank my little guy for continuing his streak of sleeping through the night (knocking on wood again) because it does help me through my day when I am not falling asleep at my desk, in the car, over the stove or on the couch.

I used to be quite a wine drinker -- I loved going to wine bars and having some vino with the girls or just sharing a bottle with the hubby on a weekend night. Drinking wine outside on a summer night was one of my favorite activities. This summer I spent most of my nights pumping on the couch and watching TV while my little guy wrestled with a sleep schedule...no patio wine nights for me. Also, I can only handle 1 or 2 glasses before I start feeling like crap or want to head off to sleep. This is my post-partum tolerance and I'm not liking it.

I have switched from wine to SkinnyGirl Margaritas (of which I can only do 1 1/2 glasses at a time) to curb calories and I seem to tolerate those better over the course of an evening--less sugar I think. Anyways, my friend gave me a nice bottle of wine for my 30th birthday that is currently chilling in my garage fridge waiting for a night when she and I can relax and share it...when will that be? When Cam is 18?

More later -- I have to talk about the Teen Mom at some point. OH, and I am truly truly excited about a new show that is coming out... TLC's Sister Wives - a polygamist reality show!!!! Remember my wish for one? Well, it came true and I cannot wait for September 26th.
Later skaters.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Amazing Things

SLEEP -- sweet beautiful sleep! Cam is finally sleeping through the night -- well, at least from 11pm -7am -- and I couldn't be happier. I'm sure that I have now jinxed this new development (I'm knocking on wood right now) by writing about it, but I really am excited and relieved. I this day would never come. My little guy is growing up.

I finally watched the two part RHONJ Reunion show...INTENSE. So now that Danielle is off the show what is the point of watching it? Of course I want to see the drama of Teresa becoming "poor" and I always love some Manzo gossip, but really, what is the RHONJ without Danielle Staub? Again, my head will explode if she gets her own show, but I can say that I will miss her special kind of crazy.
The two part reunion show was basically a lot of yelling and talking over each other, but we did learn a few key things:

1. Danielle is no longer sleeping with married men -- or men at all. She is now "swimming in the lady pond" as Andy Cohen said...I don't particularly like that phrase as it makes me think of those Nuvaring commercials with the synchronized swimmers who shed their birth control to go in what looks like a hot tub with other women...hmmmm... anyways, Danielle loves her some ladies now (her "music partner" Lori in particular). Again, I hope that her daughters have a GOOD and qualified therapist.

2. Teresa did not have a clue that she was spending her family into bankruptcy. Ummm...this is 2010 -- the clueless wife excuse does not hold up. Apparently, once she found out about the financial trouble, she "went to work" and "did appearances every night." I can't fault her for trying to make money, but it begs the question -- who is paying for her to "appear"? I'm imagining a mall bookstore in Short Hills, NJ.

3. Caroline lost weight with portion control. She looks good.

4. Jacqueline and Danielle were both wearing sequins -- and a lot of them. I don't have anything else to say about that.

5. Danny, the felon, was married at one time -- and no, he and Danielle did not sleep together (or at least that is what she says...). This is funny because I always thought that the goon that was by his side during filming was also his boyfriend from prison.

6. Kim G. gets on every one's nerves (including mine) except for Jacqueline. She swears like a sailor. Even my husband hopes that she doesn't show up for next season (yeah, I force him to watch with me).

7. Teresa freaks out when Danielle mentions some nephew...I wish that there was a better back story to this, but it turns out that Teresa was just flipping out because Danielle is continually getting into her and her family's business. Frankly I don't blame her for freaking out on her, but it must made Teresa look crazy too.

8. Danielle will always carry a part of Jacqueline "in her heart."

9. We learned the procedure and construction for installing a hair extension and also how difficult it is to pull one out. Caroline laughing throughout the entire demo was classic. I know that I couldn't have kept a straight face if Danielle pulled a mannequin head out of her purse...WHAT?

10. And, last but not least -- Amazing things. Amazing things. Amazing things. New beginnings.

Peace out RHONJ Season 2, you were good to me in my postpartum days.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Pop Mama's Favorite Things, Part 1

It has been a slow week for pop news, so I'd thought I'd share some of my new mom favorite things. I'm not Oprah, so I can't give away each of these products to every reader - even though I'd like to. This is Part 1 because I know that I will have more favorites as my little guy grows! Here are some of the things I found to be necessities in the last 4 months:

1. pockets -- where else would I stow my keys, cell phone, Cam's pacifier, the earrings he is trying to pull out of my ears, etc. (sure I still have a purse, but anyone who has been a new mom pack mule knows that one more bag is not always a wise choice).

2. cable -- uh, hello, you read this blog -- you know how TV has become my only vice.

3. video monitor -- when you just can't get out of bed, but need to see if the noise is "real" crying or just noise.

4. Baby K'tan wrap -- when nothing else would do, this thing calmed him down and let him snuggle in for a nice snooze in a second womb. http://www.babyktan.com/

5. homemade frozen meals -- soups, chili, etc. were a lifesaver many a night when we were too tired to cook and hadn't been able to make it to the store.

6. glider / recliner / rocker -- mine does all three and I LOVE IT. A necessity for a nursery.

7. my mom -- she has been there to help so many times and my husband and I are very grateful!

8. pacifier (aka "the miracle plug")

9. hands-free breast pumping bra (http://www.easyexpressionproducts.com/)

10. swing! luckily he likes it and when he was brand-new it was one of the only ways he would sleep... we have this one:
I know I haven't even recapped the RHONJ Season 2 Reunion Show Part 1 yet, but maybe I will do it all at once next week after Part 2. Have an awesome holiday weekend!!!!