Michelle Smiles

Teaching my children to question authority, except mine.

Let the neuroses begin…


What do these 2 things have in common?

Last night, I woke up around 2AM from an awful dream.  It started out with me giving birth to Tessa (thankfully my mind didn’t even contemplate what was involved in that process…we entered our story post birth giving).  Tessa wasn’t quite “normal”.  Instead of hands and feet she had tongs and corkscrews – basically she was a like a swiss army knife.  Then she morphed into an angry crab.  As a crab, she paced (sideways of course because that is how a crab paces) on a metal table *click, clack, click clack* and at the end of each leg was a tool from a swiss army knife.

It sounds very silly but I have to tell you I woke up deeply disturbed.  I tried to tell Steve but he just snored louder and turned over.  I am sure all moms to be have these types of dreams before they have their children but isn’t the physical discomfort enough without my psyche screwing with me too?

posted under Pregnancy | 14 Comments »

Summer living


I wish the past 3 days were a true representation of summer in TN. It has been gorgeous. Low 80’s, low humidity, sunny, pleasant, open window weather – darn near perfect even for those of us who are pregnant and nearly impossible to please.

Last night, I finally got back to my book club after a 3 month absence. I love my mommy groups but I really adore the change of pace of hanging out with women who talk about boyfriends/husbands and careers and places grown ups go and things other that which is toddler related. I had a ball sitting on the patio, coveting the glasses of wine they were all sipping, chatting about everything from my pregnancy to state capitals named after presidents (there are 4…can you name them?). I was enjoying myself so much that I sat until my ankles and calves swelled to 3 times their normal size.

And today, the ultimate hostess around these parts invited Sabrina and I for lunch. Meredith made us a lovely quiche, salad, and lemony frozen dessert. We sat in her yard under a large tree, ate our lunch, and watched the children play. Her son was quite the gentleman and played so well with the girls. And girls, one being slightly under 2 and one being a bit over 2, did surprising well despite being at non-sharing ages. It was a lovely afternoon filled with great company and yummy food. Thanks Meredith!

I took a camera but of course didn’t get it out of my purse. Here is Sabrina prior to 2 hours spent playing in the yard. She came home a little dirtier and a little tired but had a great time.

posted under nashville | 8 Comments »

Now with extra mushy hormones!


I heart NPR most of the time.  It is one of the few things I miss about commuting to work (that and the after work cigarette…don’t judge me – obviously I’m not indulging in that habit anymore).  Yesterday after a quick doctor visit, a not so quick errand, a trip to the clearance section of a bookstore, and a fast sprint through Old Navy maternity to see if there might be shorts that wouldn’t cut off my circulation when I sit down and cover my now scary thighs (there weren’t), I ran to the grocery store.  I had NPR on and had to stay in the car to listen to the rest of this story about couples getting marriage licenses in California yesterday.  The story was full of love and hope and people who had been waiting for a long time to be allowed to get married.

I know a lot of people don’t just disagree with same sex marriage but think it will cause the downfall of our civilization.  I just can’t wrap my head around the thinking.  With all of the ugliness and violence in the world, can’t we all just celebrate and appreciate love where it is found?  Two women, ages 87 and 83, who have loved one another for over 50 years, finally got married yesterday.  People marched outside carrying signs with hateful messages (“God hates Lying Sinners”  wow they grew up learning about a very different God than I did).  Why is that something that would cause anyone a moment of anger or upset?  They didn’t ask God to sanction the marriage – just the mayor.  (Although I don’t believe that God or any higher power would frown upon finding love in this world – but that is my own personal belief.)

As I sat in the car listening to these couples talk about their joy and excitement over being able to plan weddings and marriages, I found myself with tears in my eyes.  I find it so touching to hear that kind of happiness – regardless if the voices are male and female or male and male.  I was so happy for them all only to find myself dismayed to hear that they all have to fear for the status of their unions when voters in California vote on a state constitutional amendment this fall banning same sex marriage.  It makes me angry that there are horrible things happening in our world: hunger, abuse, abandoned children, violence,  homelessness, disease, and on and on but the thing that many people choose to spend their energy fighting against?  Love.

posted under political | 29 Comments »

No more leftovers


Meredith recently had a post asking what readers did with left over pound cake.  My response was one of confusion.  Left over cake?  If I’m lucky enough to have left over cake in the house there usually isn’t a quandary about what to do with it.  I We eat it.  What does that have to do with anything other than my rapidly expanding butt?  I’ve found a new way to deal with left over cake.

I made a cake for a pot luck at Steve’s office last week.  It is one of his favorites in the summer and he asked if I would make one for him for Father’s Day.  It is a nice light cake for summer:  lemon cake baked according to directions, poke holes in it, pour strawberry jello (before it sets up) over the top, then top with cool whip and berries of your choice.  Easy and yummy and pretty.  (You’ll often see the strawberries and blueberries in a flag design for the 4th of July.)

Yesterday morning I opened the frig to get Sabrina some milk for breakfast and the cake came falling out.  The dish broke on our ceramic tile – cake and glass scattered all over the kitchen.  I was more upset over losing the cake than the dish.  So no guilt for me over eating left over cake and I probably burned off a few calories cleaning up the mess.


I had to laugh at Sabrina yesterday.  I have no idea what prompted it but all day long she used her dress to hold onto her shopping cart.  She wouldn’t touch it without her dress as a shield.  Perhaps she watched one of those Datelines where they go swab a bunch of surfaces and freak us all out by telling us all of the scary stuff they found.

posted under Misc. | 13 Comments »

What were they thinking?


I’ve read about these things on several blogs as well as in the news.  I’m a little late to the party, as usual these days, but these items have stuck in my head since I originally read them.

First, Fox News used this graphic during a story about Michelle Obama:

Yes, they called her Obama’s Baby Mama – which is a somewhat derogatory slang phrase considering they are married and were married when they had their children. Fox stated that the producer used “poor judgment” in using that phrase. Really? Just poor judgment? The person who created the graphic and the person who approved its use should be fired. Fox is known for its conservative slant but apparently now they’ve just given up any appearance of unbiased journalism.

The next one makes me even angrier. A kindergarten teacher had all of the students in her class say what they didn’t like about another student’s behavior and then vote whether or not he could stay. The students call him “annoying” and “disgusting” and voted him out of the class. A 5 year old had to endure this – can you imagine what this will do to his self esteem? The child is in the process of being evaluated on the autism spectrum and the teacher was fully aware of this – not that a diagnosis should make a difference in this case. The teacher admitted to doing this and said it was because she wanted this 5 year old to know how his behavior effected his peers. Really? You think that is the most effective way? Allowing other 5 year olds to say mean and hurtful things and vote him off the island? The woman shouldn’t be allowed to teach children.

I do remember seeing on Debbie’s blog a link to send a card to the child if you are so inclined.

Happy Father’s Day


Happy Father’s Day to the best father I know.  You are the best partner in parenting I could ever have hoped for – thank you for all you do.

You have patience in reserve when mine is exhausted.

You come home from a long day at work understanding that my day with a toddler has been long also.  You spend time playing with Sabrina.  Listening to the 2 of you laugh together is the best part of my day.

When you are home, you volunteer to change 95% of the diapers – especially the nasty ones.  I can’t express how much that is appreciated.

You never just assume that mommy will take care of things – you step up and do what needs to be done.

You never consider it babysitting if I leave you and Sabrina together for the evening.  It is part of being a dad and you love hanging out with your girl.

You worry about raising responsible, independent, smart, capable women.  You worry about helping them make good choices about education, careers, money, and men.  You think beyond getting them through the toddler years and see the big picture.

And the thing I am most amazed by?  That you don’t understand what all the fuss is about – why I thank you for all of these things.  You see them as what every man who is a father should do.  Thanks for being you, my love!  There is no one else I would want to take this crazy journey with.

I’ve got mail!


On my door step this afternoon, I found a box addressed to Sabrina and Tessa.  Inside I found all sorts of goodies for the girls!  It was very exciting!  I won’t share the sender’s name because she specifically asked that I not but a huge thank you my friend!  It was like a little baby shower in a box!  So sweet and much appreciated.

Some princess jammies for Miss Sabrina:

Darling matching outfits for big sis and lil sis:

And a little lamb, socks, mittens, sleepers, a onesie, and some bibs:

Thanks again – so much fun unpacking all of the tiny little things and imagining the tiny baby that will go in them next month!

posted under Pregnancy | 6 Comments »

Stupidest Baby Products Ever


I know there are more out there but I ran across these 3 today.

First off, “high heeled” crib shoes for the low, low price of $35.   Yes, because young girls aren’t sexualized at an early enough age with the hoochie mama clothes…let’s throw in some high heeled crib shoes.

Next, a baby toupee.

And look!  A urinal you can put in the living room or kitchen.  How lovely!

posted under humor | 24 Comments »

Not fit to be around other humans


This week, pregnancy has lost any semblance of charm it might have once possessed.  I officially declare week 32 as the turning point.  I’ve never been a happy, jolly pregnant person but now I am a completely vile, nasty blob.  Yesterday, I woke up at 2:40am for my first of several nightly bathroom trips.  Tessa decided it was time to do yoga.  Once she quieted down, the Braxton-Hicks contractions conspired to keep me awake.  So I was up for the day at 2:40am.  I’m retaining water like a camel – my ankles only look normal for 3.5 seconds in the morning but once I am vertical it is all over for the day.  I growled at a clerk in a store yesterday who had the nerve to try to do her job by assisting me was bugging me.  I regularly yell at other drivers because they are idiots – good thing it is so hot that everyone has their windows rolled up and their a/c on.  Poor Steve has just decided to smile and agree with everything I say for the next couple of months.  He, the dog, and Sabrina huddle upstairs in his office to “spend time together” (read: hide from the Mommy Monster) when he comes home.

Okay, I’m done complaining.  For now.  No sympathy or you will make me feel back for complaining.  I know I’m lucky to be 32 weeks pregnant with everything seemingly going well.  Some days it is harder to remember than others.

High point of the day: I had my first of now weekly fetal non-stress tests this morning.  It was kind of fun to listen to Tessa’s heartbeat for 20 minutes.  She kicked the microphone several times and generally didn’t stop moving the entire time.  She is still measuring at exactly the 50th%tile which is a good thing.  All seems to be fine.  Projected date of induction:  on or near July 28th.

When my new non-crazy doctor was figuring that out she accidentally said my due date was October 4th instead of August 4th.  I quickly corrected her.  She laughed and said “Oh didn’t we tell you?  We miscalculated and you are due in October not August.  Wouldn’t that be funny?”  Hardy-har-har-har.  She is lucky I like her – that kind of joke could make an uncomfortable pregnant lady snap.

posted under Pregnancy | 15 Comments »

Protein? I don’t need no stinkin’ protein!


Sabrina rejects most forms of protein. Eggs is the only protein she will eat without a fight most days. Once in awhile beans or chicken nuggets will pass muster. But usually I have to badger her into eating protein. So mommy tries to get creative. What kid doesn’t love mac & cheese with hotdogs? Mine. I made her some macaroni and mixed some cut up hot dogs in it. She carefully removed each piece of hotdog and pushed it to the side. If I slip meat into her scrambled eggs, she will suck the egg off each piece of meat and discard the meat. Look how proud she is of herself – every scrap of macaroni gone and her little pile of meat left.

Perhaps she needs a visit from MizFit to explain the importance of protein.

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