dutch adventures

the cool thing about the Christmas/New Year’s season is getting days off from work. and naturally for dutch, that means time off from daycare too. lots of time off from daycare. spending lots of full days with a 2-year-old can leave one…well, a bit nut-so.

saturday evening we went over to wal-mart. wal-mart is one of my least favorite stores, but since they have clear boxes that make easy and neat storage for shoes at a whopping 97 cents, it just made sense to go. dutch acted his usual nutball self, you know, not wanting to sit in the cart, screaming and ruining folks’ wal-mart shopping experience, etc., etc.

oh, but he really showed his tail at our next stop.

next up, giant food store. you know those car attachments that many grocery stores have attached to their shopping carts in order to keep small kids entertained while you shop? genius idea, right? well, something tells me that the makers of those carts never actually tried to push a child in one of those things. first of all, they’re pretty tough to maneuver because they’re just too daggone big. then tack on the fact that my child was wearing a big, puffy coat which made it impossible to fasten the seat belt in the thing. so he was all loosey, goosey in the seat and had waaaaay too much freedom.

i knew it was going to be an interesting shopping experience.

so i’m checking out the meat section and dutch is grabbing chicken gizzards and placing them neatly beside him in the car, but i didn’t notice this until we were waaaaaaay past the chicken gizzard section. all i can say is thank goodness for purell.

then dutch jumped out of the car oh, about 5 million times while i was pushing the thing. my shoes had absolutely no grip on the bottom so as i’m pushing the cart and dutch is flying out like super toddler or something, i’m trying to stop the cart, but instead i’m sliding down the aisle with dutch mid-air. it was quite a sight, i’m sure.

i remembered that i had a starbucks gift card on me and since giant has a starbucks in the store i figured i’d indulge. so i’m standing in line waiting to order my caramel machiatto when dutch gets out of the car and decides to slide around on the floor. on the floor, people! i was so freakin’ grossed out. i said, “dutch, what are you doing?!!” he answered, “i’m a snake, mama!” like i said before, thanks for purell.

turns out that ordering a hot, steamy caramel machiatto while pushing a very hard to maneuver car cart thingy (with no cupholders, mind you) with a nutball 2-year-old bouncing around in it was not such a good idea.

i think that all of the workers at giant and all of the shoppers were pretty glad to see us leave because i know i said, “stop, dutch,” “put that down, dutch,” “get back in the car, dutch,” and “dutch, stop hanging your head out of the car or you’ll knock yourself into a coma on a super large can of pork ‘n beans” way too many times.

sunday was full of exciting moments as well. we visited several family members and then came home so that i could cook dinner. can i just say that we over did it in the toy department for Christmas? dutch has waaaaaaaaay too much stuff now, but i noticed that when my mom comes over to watch dutch she has a play with one toy at a time rule so i figured i’d give that a whirl to try to make my life simpler.

so last evening dutch had his million matchbox car collection spread all over the floor and was heading towards the million piece lincoln log collection when i said, “dutch, you need to put these cars away first before you play with the lincoln logs.”

dutch: i don’t want to.

mama: well then you can’t play with the lincoln logs.

dutch: i don’t want to clean up. [proceeding to head for the million piece lincoln log collection.]

mama: if you don’t put the cars away first you’re going to sit in time out.

dutch: [thinks for a minute.]

mama: let’s put the cars away now.

dutch: i’m ready to go in time out now. [moves towards his time out chair.]

and then i’m left picking up the million car collection.

kindred the family soul welcomes twins!


congratulations to my cousins, aja and fatin, on the birth of their twins!! already the proud parents of three, the couple recently welcomed two baby girls into their family.

in case you didn’t know, aja and fatin are a husband and wife soul music duo also known as kindred the family soul. these philly artists represent to me what good music is all about. great lyrics, slammin’ beats. oh, they’ve got it. we’re talking talent out the ying yang here. none of that fluffy stuff with wack lyrics and folks who can’t hold a note. and i’m not just saying that because they’re my family, every person i know who has seen them live on stage has been in awe of their performance. the chemistry that aja and fatin have is simply beautiful. and awesome. and electric… it’s no mystery why their song “stars” has been popular at weddings. it’s good stuff.

go ahead, run out, buy their two cd’s surrender to love and in this life together. you’ll be happy that you did. trust me.



also, check out kindred’s myspace page to get a feel for what they’re all about and you read their story at hidden beach media.




dutch gives thanks

i got an early Christmas gift from my 2-year-old son dutch last night. we sat down to eat dinner and he bowed his head, held his little hands (okay, so they’re not really all that little) together and said:

“thank you for a food, amen.”

i wish you could’ve been there. it was truly the cutest daggone thing ever! so what if he got rice all over the table and floor and it stuck to his socks when he got up from the table 12 times during dinner. he’s thankful for “a food” and that’s all that counts.

forget malibu barbie, it’s malibu mama!

i was recently invited to the mandarin oriental hotel in washington dc for general motors’ ride & drive event. it was a great opportunity to hear all about chevy’s new vehicle and also to give the new 2008 chevrolet malibu a twirl.

Chevy Malibu LS


Chevrolet Malibu LS

here are some basics about the 2008 malibu:

  • it’s a nice looking midsize vehicle and it represents gm’s answer to the honda accord, toyota camry, and nissan altima.
  • the hybrid model starts at $22,790.
  • it has a great looking interior with six color combination options.
  • comes with onstar with turn-by-turn navigation.
  • also has xm satellite radio. need i say more?
  • head-curtain side air bags and front-seat thorax air bags.
  • equipped with standard theft-deterrent system.
  • and for some odd reason, the malibu comes with two handy-dandy 3-prong outlets which could be used to hook up a cell phone, laptop computer or as martin hayes, vehicle performance manager for the malibu, suggested, a blender. well, alrighty then!

okay, i’m not going to lie. i had no idea at all what this vehicle looked like before attending the event, but you know, i really dug the shape of it once i saw it parked in front of the hotel.  although i’m not a huge fan of the grille (it seemed a bit too manly for my taste), i definitely thought that in terms of how the vehicle looked, it was something that i would consider.

Malibu Hybrid

Malibu Hybrid

Continue reading forget malibu barbie, it’s malibu mama!

first report card at daycare

this morning was my first parent/daycare provider conference with dutch’s provider eva. you know, it’s sorta like a parent/teacher conference at school only we discussed how much of his lunch he eats, whether or not he stays seated during story time and if he digs in his diaper a lot during the day.

my genius son received glowing reports on how smart he is.

“he picks up things really quickly.”

“he’s my little helper.”

“he’s talking so much.”

and then came the…well, not so good stuff like how dutch likes to hit the other children from time to time and how he likes to boss them around, and of course he wants what he wants when he wants it. and yes, i’m sure most 2-year-olds are a bit like this, but for some reason it just seems like my child takes it to an entirely new level.

for instance, last night i was watching television and dutch said, “i want juice, mama. give me my juice.” i’ve told him time and time again to ask politely and say, “may i have some juice, please?” but he’s stubborn and he likes to do things his way. so next he grabbed my chin and turned my face towards his and said, “look at me, look at me! i want juice, mama!”

hmmmmmm… this could be a problem, no?

especially when after the other day i told him he couldn’t play with a toy while we were trying to get dressed to leave and he told me that he was going to beat me up. imagine that. a three-foot tall 2-year-old (not even two and a half, people!) said he was going to beat me up. and that wasn’t enough!! he made a song about it!

wanna hear it? here it goes:

“i’mma beat you up, baby… i’mma beat you, baby…”

i have no idea where my child gets this stuff from, but i do know that he has an active imagination (already) and that his playing with his 12-year-old big brother gets a little too physical sometimes which is why i believe he thinks that hitting is okay. as a matter of fact, he usually injures his big brother at least one good time every time my step-son is over to visit. we all kinda laugh it off when it’s happening, but my husband and i are realizing that that’s probably the root of our little problemo. especially now that dutch is coming home from daycare naming all of the kids he’s hit during the day.

“mama, i hit sarah.”

“mama, i hit sasha.”

“mama, i hit marquis.”

who knew a toddler could show such aggression?

he’s not seriously hurting kids at daycare, don’t get me wrong. although there was that one time that he hit the eva’s 4-year-old in the head with a cup and caused a big knot that swole up pretty quickly. but it was just that one time. mostly there’s just a lick here and there or a shove, but we know we have to get this under control. and get it under control now.

a girlfriend of mine has a son who’s two months older than dutch and he’s going through this hitting phase too. maybe we should just let them duke it out!! you know, get little boxing gloves and show it on pay-per-view. we’d make a killing! i could just see it now…

have some compassion

at the risk of sounding like one of those commercials you’ve seen hundreds of times about children in third world countries who need your sponsorship, hey, there are millions of children out there who could really use your sponsorship.

i have sponsored a child through compassion, Christian child advocacy ministry, for a few years now and there are many other children in the program who still need sponsors.

the compassion mission statement:

releasing children from poverty in Jesus’ name. in response to the great commission, compassion international exists as an advocate for children, to release them from their spiritual, economic, social and physical poverty and enable them to become responsible and fulfilled Christian adults.

so if you’ve got a little time and you’re interested, click on the compassion link above for more information.

morning french fries

it amazes me how toddlers process information…or don’t. and it also amazes me how they assume that when they want something, no matter what it is, that it will just magically appear. perhaps that’s because that’s the way it’s been their entire little lives so far.

i cry. i get a bottle.

i’m wet. i get changed.

i cry more. i get food.

but there comes a time when you simply can’t fulfill every request because well, in the real world (you know, the one outside of the toddler world), things just don’t work like that. for instance, this morning dutch wanted eggs. well, the eggs in our fridge had expired so i told him we didn’t have any and that he’d have to eat something else. naturally, my response to his request didn’t go over so well and back and forth we went…

dutch: i want eggs!

mama: we don’t have any, dutch.

dutch: i want eggs!!

mama: we don’t have any…

dutch: [progressively getting whinier and whinier by the minute] i want eggggggggggggggggggggs!!

then i thought of a solution! we’ll stop at mc’donald’s (i know, i know…) and pick up one of their egg platter doo-hickey’s on the way to daycare! yayyyyyyyyyyy! for mama!

only to dutch mcdonald’s = french fries. not eggs.

so after we pulled away from the drive-thru window the crazy requests started all over again:

dutch: i want my french fries!

mama: they don’t serve french fries in the morning, dutch. only hash browns. and i got you some eggs!! remember you said you wanted eggs before we left the house?

so i handed him the hash brown.

dutch: what’s this, mama?

mama: it’s a hash brown. you know, it’s sorta like one big french fry! taste it, i’m sure you’ll love it.

he took a bite and there for a while it seemed like we would have a peaceful ride. then i noticed that he was getting down to the paper packaging of the hash brown so i grabbed it, took a bite, and then pulled it out of the paper. you know, for easier access. i handed it back to him and he said…

dutch: why you bite it, mama?

mama: what? i can’t have any?

dutch: i don’t want it. i want my french fry!!

the nephew

last weekend my sis-in-law went out of town to celebrate her big 23rd birthday and instead of living la vida loca and joining the party train, we were penciled in to babysit our nephew kody. i think this whole plan was my husband’s suggestion and for some odd reason he really, really seemed excited about the whole thing.

i wasn’t feeling the same type of sunshiney anticipation.

it’s not that i don’t think the nephew is cute and all, he is. he really is, but i knew that there would be lots of drama in my household between the nephew and dutch. lots. for starters, dutch is so bossy and since kody is so much smaller than him, he makes good material for dutch. and my son is relentless. whenever those two are in a room together it never fails, dutch is fussing and fussing at him and poor kody is just trying to get in where he can fit in. dutch yells for him to go to time out and poor kody just keeps coming back for more. and dutch has been known to swing on kody a time or two too. i know, i know, but what can i say? dutch is working out some kind of toddler aggression on poor kody. with all this in mind, i braced myself for a wild weekend and expected the worse.

friday my husband reminded dutch that kody would be over that evening and dutch was way excited about kody’s impending visit. all he talked about on the way to daycare was kody, kody, kody… i started to feel like i was the sour puss of the bunch and raining on the “we’re having kody over for the weekend” parade, but by this point dutch was already hacking like an 84-year-old guy because of his cold and i just knew the mix of kody, dutch’s cold and having my stepson over for the weekend would make for a very interesting mix. for one, we’re not working with much space here, but that’s another story.

see, kody’s only a few months old. don’t ask how many months old ’cause i’m not sure, but he’s definitely not a year yet. and anyway, you know how the youngin’s get. they have all kinds of energy, they just go and go and go, and they rarely wanna stick to any kind of real schedule. and just like i thought that daggone kody drove me nuts as soon as he got to our place. he was just so freakin’ needy!! i mean, really, who knew he could be soooooo needy?! and every time i turned around he was right under my feet. i didn’t step on him (thank goodness!), but geez louise, he almost caused me trip over him more than once. and not only that, dutch would not leave him alone. he was in kody’s face the whole time (just like i knew he’d be), filling kody’s space with germy essences, and then to make matters worse kody would not go to sleep. at all.

i got up several times during the night to get medicine and juice for dutch and could not help but notice that kody was like some kind of energizer bunny on crack. it was like, c’mon!! give me a break!! go to sleep!! around 3 a.m. he was still hyper and acting like it was noon! it was then that edellizille said, “if i would’ve known it would be like this, i would’ve left his little butt at home and just came by to check on him.”

my thoughts exactly.

the next morning kody was still up, wanting to play. i thought, are you kidding me?? i don’t think he slept a wink at all and i just knew he had to be dead tired by now, but he sure wasn’t acting like it. my mother told me to just leave him alone in a quiet room and maybe then he’d just drift off to sleep. she said, “you’ve gotta make sure he gets some sleep because if not he’ll have a heart attack just from being so hyper.”

amazingly by sunday we had all fallen into a routine with kody. he was finally getting proper rest and dutch wasn’t fussing at him as much. what can i say? the kid was growing on me. i even had the wonderful idea of getting some pictures of him before my husband left to take him home. we tried several times to get him to sit in dutch’s small leather chair for a picture, but kody just wasn’t having that. then just when we had stopped paying attention, i noticed that he had gone over to the chair and got up in the seat all by himself.

ain’t he just the cutest little thing ever??



you just gotta love him!



i can’t wait till it’s my sis-in-law’s turn to babysit ’cause you know what they say…pay back’s a mutha!! haha!



the reckless driver?

going 20 miles over the speed limit in the state of virginia can land your butt in jail.

did you know that?

yes indeedy. say you’re going 75 on 495 (aka the beltway) and the speed limit is 55, you face a class one misdemeanor criminal charge which is punishable by up to 12 months in jail, up to a $2,500 fine and a suspended driver’s license for up to 6 months.

oh, they are not playing in v.a.

which brings me to yesterday’s drama. my husband edell was caught speeding on his way to work back in march. when he first told me i thought, no big deal. right? wouldn’t most people think that? i figured we’d pay a ticket and be on our merry little way.

oh, silly, naive me.

edell has been back and forth to court quite a few times over the past several months trying to resolve this whole reckless speeding issue. one judge wanted him to spend 10 days in jail. for speeding, people. 10 days in jail.

there was no accident, he wasn’t racing anyone, no one was maimed or killed. he was just speeding.

okay, so i know that people are injured every day in car accidents from people driving above the speed limit. but who the heck doesn’t speed? if you’ve ever driven on the beltway in the dc metropolitan area then you know that you have to speed or else you will get crumpled on the road.

so yesterday we (my husband, my pop and stepmother, my mother-in-law, and my brother-in-law) sat in court waiting for my husband’s case to be called. for speeding. oh yeah, we roll pretty deep, by the way. and we listened to other cases go up:

the first lady was in court because she worked in a doctor’s office and was stealing the identities of the patients. this chick went out and got a nordstrom’s credit card in some woman’s name and was caught. the accused was from another country so now she faces jail time and the possibility of being deported.

and we’re here for speeding?

then there was the first ignoramus who ran into target and stole a dyson vacuum cleaner (you know, the one that doesn’t lose suction?). the bama ran out of the store with the thing!! did he really think he could get away with running out of target with a vacuum cleaner? apparently so. and now he faces a felony charge because the vacuum was valued at over $200.

and we’re here for speeding?

Continue reading the reckless driver?

oh, the neb…

mama and daddy get married.

daddy has asthma.

mama and daddy have baby.

while they won’t call it asthma yet, baby has little breathing issues.

enter the dreaded hummmmmmmmmmmmmmm… of the nebulizer.

i remember the first time i thought i heard my son wheezing. my husband was out-of-town on business and a girlfriend was visiting dutch for the first time. i wasn’t quite sure what wheezing sounded like because well, nobody in my family wheezes, and i had never heard my husband wheeze either. so i asked my girlfriend if dutch’s breathing sounded like wheezing to her. she said yep and the next day we were on our way to the doctor.

i remember dutch’s doctor bringing in the nebulizer and showing me how to use it. she poured in the albuterol, turned on the machine and placed a mask on my 7-month-old’s face. then she walked out of the room and i cried. then i looked down at dutch and he started smiling. apparently having vaporized steroids blown into your nose is pretty funny. at least my child thought so.

dutch doesn’t need neb treatments all of the time. in fact, it’s usually when the pollen is really bad, but the slightest cold has been known to kick off his wheezing too.

which brings me to the snot nosed kid at his daycare. i went to pick dutch up from daycare last thursday and one of the provider’s other children she keeps during the day toddled over to me with the biggest, prettiest smile on his face. he also had a huge, green glob of snot hanging from his nose. oh, i knew it was about to be on.

first came the cough, then the snotty nose, then the wheezing. and more wheezing and a lot more coughing. and then…


if you’ve kept up with reports, then you know you’re not supposed to just give your kid under 6 cold medicine all willy nilly anymore. you really need to talk to your doctor first, but in dutch’s case cold medicine doesn’t do the trick anyway. this isn’t your run-of-the-mill cold that gets dutch really sick, it’s a tightness in his lungs. and as much as i haven’t wanted to admit it, it’s asthma.

cough medicine does nothing for an asthmatic cough. in fact, if you read the warning on cough medicine it tells you that if your child has asthma, then cough medicine is not the way to go. except that it explains that in more medical type terms. i don’t have a box of the stuff in front me so i can’t accurately quote the cough medicine box.

yesterday dutch stayed home with my mother while mama and daddy tended to other important stuff (i’ll write about this later, honey. major drama!) and by the time we got home, my child was absolutely listless. he didn’t run to the door to greet us as he would usually do. he didn’t even look up at us to say hi. in fact, he didn’t say anything. at all. all night long.

to know my child is to know that he (just like his mother) will talk a hole into the side of your head. he has the gift of gab and loves to blab on about nothing just to have something to blab about (again, just like his mother). so to see him in this state freaked me out. so onto the doctor we rolled today.

Continue reading oh, the neb…